Monday, October 15, 2007

Dee . . . Troit!

I got a taste of Detroit this past weekend. There for a show, I hooked up with my friend Sven and got a small sampling of what the motor city has to offer.

With Sven's assistance I managed to back the Airstream in to its tightest spot yet. It barely fit on the narrow single-lane driveway next to Sven's 1920s house. Neighbors had to move cars for us when I was arriving and departing.

I met Sven's wife Kristen (he was single when we first met). He's a journalist and an amazingly good guy--Kristen is a gem too and is about to add a third to their young family.

We were all busy, but still managed to hang out. One of the coolest things we did was go to dinner at a place called Union Street on Woodward Avenue in Detroit. My maternal grandparents are from Detroit. Back in their day the restaurant we ate at was Italian and called Arturo's. While I don't know for sure if they ever went there, I had a strong feeling that they'd been there too. They've been gone since 1985 and 1990--it was nice to imagine I was visiting an old haunt of theirs.

The restaurant was done up in high art deco style that clearly dated from the 1930s but has been faithfully kept up over the decades. I love art deco. Airstream's were born in that same decade and boast the streamlined design also used in the deco style. The interior of my trailer is pure 1970s, but the exterior maintains the 1930s design of the original Airstreams.

Amy Sorensen of Lebe Loola jewelry took care of Jake (my pup) and I spent Sunday night at her very cool 1920s house in Jackson, Michigan, west of Ann Arbor. Muchos muchos gracias for taking great care of the Jakester.

On my way out of Michigan on Monday I was able to meet up with another dear friend, Jennifer D., formerly of Salt Lake City. She's got an amazing spirit and it was a joy to see her.

Michigan is a great state and so different from Ohio--it's neighbor and my home state. It's very much a water state with a strong orientation to the Great Lakes and the smaller lakes of northern Michigan. My family vacationed there when I was young and I've been back a few times because my younger brother is based on Mackinac Island in Lake Huron. October is a good time to be heading out of Michigan too. The winter is long and brutal. For Airstreamers like me, that means it's time to head towards warmer climates (Arizona is coming in about 10 weeks).

The Detroit show went well. Considering the economy there, I was very happy. Thanks to everyone who made it a great weekend.