Lake evokes memories of summers past

My favorite place in the world to watch the sun set is on the edge of my grandparents’ dock in Traverse City, Michigan. Sure, there are plenty of places more beautiful. But none hold more memories.

As I dip my feet in the chilly waters of Lake Leelanau, I’m reminded of all the summers I spent here, frolicking with cousins and pulling up stones submerged underwater in search of crayfish. I remember my once muscular grandfather, now too frail to stand on his own, wading into the water with his shirt unbuttoned, pulling a 10-foot aluminum boat to the shore with one hand.

I remember fishing in that boat with my father, and begging him to stay out a little longer even though the sun was setting (a few minutes later, much to his surprise, I caught a large bass that nearly snapped my Mickey Mouse fishing pole).

I remember my grandmother yelling at us from the shore when we would swim too far out, and pretending like I couldn’t hear her even though she was well within earshot.

With each passing sunset, I cherish these memories a little more.


The sun sets over Lake Leelanau. The lake is connected to the Leland River, which flows into Lake Michigan.


Traverse City bay.


During northern Michigan summers, the sun doesn’t set until after 10 p.m.

Bike trail.

A bike trail that runs near my grandparents’ home.


Another section of the trail.


The colors of fall.

7 thoughts on “Lake evokes memories of summers past

  1. My grand parents lived on Marble Lake, a magical place, especially for a young boy, Boats, swimming, fishing, my grandmas special charm, I get what you’re saying. I miss that time and place.

  2. I stayed there with you guys one weekend long ago. I dove off that dock on a beautiful Michigan morning…only to emerge surrounded by four angry swans intent on either plucking out my eyes or drowning me, my choice. I guess I invaded their peaceful kingdom so I don’t hold it against them. Somehow, it’s a great memory!

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