BrondaBailey’s Weblog

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2008 Michigan Trip

Oooo, I’m off to a great start with that classy title! Simply scintillating! I was trying to come up with a good subtitle, but, “What I did on my summer vacation” seemed too cliche and “Driving to and from Detroit can be fun!” seemed to long for a subtitle (and a lie.) I’m sure some of you have wondered where exactly we go when we fly to Michigan every year. Well, as you may or may not be aware, Michigan is made up of two peninsulas. The southern (and larger) of the two is shaped (kind of) like a left handed mitten. Basically, put a dot in the center of the mitten and you’ve got Ithaca. Wow, in trying to discover interesting facts about Ithaca (the only one currently coming to mind being that Cheryl, Brenda’s sister, and her husband Jason and their family lives there) is the name of an island in Greece – see kids, you can learn something now and then on the Internet! Now, for the Ithaca I am actually familiar, with, I’m proud to report had a rip-roarin’ population of 3,098.

Not my picture, but very cool.

Light Tunnel Detroit Airport

We flew into the Detroit airport and luckily, we flew into the B terminal.  Now you might be thinking, “What kind of idiot cares what terminal he flies into?”  Well, I only care because when you fly from B and C you get to go underneath one section of the runway in a tunnel which was designed as more than a mere tunnel.  This is more like something out of the Fortress of Solitude only with moving sidewalks.  It’s called the Light Tunnel and is a very cool visual show with different colors shining through different textures of a very long strip of glass panes on both side of the tunnel.  The lights change colors in sync with peaceful music/sounds.  It’s kind of ethereal and hard to describe, but it’s very relaxing after a long, loud plane flight.

Luckily, Luke handled himself fabulously on the flight out and we landed without any incidents.  We picked up our rental car and headed out to Ithaca.  Unfortunately, the weather on the ground was not as accomodating in the air.  It took longer than normal due to traffic and weather, and we eventually pulled off and grabbed some snacks.  Eventually, we made our way to Ithaca and were greeted by Brenda’s parents, Cheryl, Jason, and the kids.  We would have loved the chance to meet little baby Jordin, but she prefered to sleep the entire time we were there that night.

Now, here comes the fun part.  We made the two hour or so drive back to Detroit the very next day to drop Brenda’s parents of at a hotel by the airport so they could catch their flight the next day.  Rather than just drive an drop them off, someone (Jason I think) had the sensible idea of making a trip out of it, and we all trooped off to the Rainforest Cafe.  Now, Bren and I went to the Rainforest Cafe in San Fransisco on our Honeymoon and we’d visited the one outside Disneyland with Skyler, but I can’t say we were dying to get back.  In fact, a few years back I swore off theme restaraunts for good – you’re paying for atmosphere rather than food I figured.

Fun at the Rainforest Cafe

What a great place for Luke to figure out that his Dad will pick up anything he throws on the floor almost indefinitely.

Fun at the Rainforest Cafe

Any wildlife experts out there know if this is an African or European swallow . . . I mean, African or Indian animatronic elephant?

Ah, but I hadn’t counted on how children mix up our ideas about things.   Gosh, next you’ll be telling me I’ll change my TV viewing habits for my kids (Dora is forever banned from my house and so is Diego – I don’t care how many animals he’s rescued!)  Or worse, next people will say I’ll be giving up prime video game time for things like . . . reading inane books that use the basic 6 words to convey a poorly constructed plot.  Hah!  Not likely!  The kids all loved it and had a great time, which made the trip more than worthwhile.  I was actually pretty surprised, the audio-animatronic dinosaurs we saw a couple of weeks ago didn’t seem to do much for Luke, but he really liked some of the animals at the Rainforest Cafe.  He was especially fond of the elephant, so I had Brenda snap a picture of him with it.  While I personally found the animals less than convincing, I have to admit that the many tropical fish aquariums were beautiful.  And the restaraunt had a great ambience all around, even if it was punctuated by orangutans and apes hooting every 25 minutes during the “rainstorm.”  The bathrooms were also themed (the true mark of a high quality theme restaraunt) and the food was pretty good.  We bought Luke a monkey (much like the one a certain friend of ours Charlie Budd owns.)  His grandma bought him an elephant.  Oh, and I bought a husky beanie baby to put in my classroom (they’re our school mascot.)  I think I would feel sorry for any sled dog that happened to wander into a rainforest, so I snatched him up.

Well, it’s 11:30 so, I’m going to head for bed – but I didn’t want to get behind already on my new plan to keep this thing updated.  There are still more stories of Michigan to come, but it will have to wait for another time.  I’m not used to this whole going-into-work thing, so now seems like a good time to re-acclimate myself.  I’ll leave off with another picture from the Rainforest Cafe, this one of the family.  Feel free to peruse the pictures on Flickr in our Michigan Vacation 08 set and abuse my poor photography in the comments.

Fun at the Rainforest Cafe

And as an aside, I really don’t plan on seeing any more audio-animatronic animals extinct or otherwise for a while, so don’t worry, I’m not planning on making that a major theme of the blog.


August 14, 2008 - Posted by | Family News, Flickr Update, Ron's Posts | , , ,


  1. Looks fun! We went to the Rainforest Cafe in Cancun and had french fries, for the truly authentic rainforest experience!

    You and Kristi and your Dora-hate. Ay de mi!

    Comment by Jeremy | August 15, 2008 | Reply

  2. Amigo Ron,

    Parabens por sua viagem. Gostei das fotos.

    Um abraco de seu amigo,


    Comment by Tiago | August 15, 2008 | Reply

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