Day Eight: The Old Wild West is still alive in Michigan

I was obviously getting the hang of this holiday lark as I didn't arise until 9 am on the Friday of my visit. Nearly a week in the USA now and obviously acclimatized. Having done the ritualistic ablutions and breakfast, we made preparations for our weekend trip to Williams Lake.

Our preparations of course included loading up the beer,food and our spritely outfits for a weekend of sun and fishing. I hadn't been course fishing since my student days, so I was looking forward to "dangling my hook".

Off we set then for Williams Lake and this trip to the outback past some more of Michigan's lakes took us to the real rural areas. On our way, we stopped for lunch at a real wild west type place called Gregory. Here there was a "saloon" built in 1893 and the scene was straight out of "High Noon":
We dismounted from the car, entered the saloon and all the talking stopped.
We looked around and the local's looked ugly, especially the women behind the bars.
"Waddya want fellas?" In our best Black Country accents: "Beefburger and chips please and a pint of Banks's"
"You guys ain't from 'round here are you?"
"No! We're from Wolverhampton!"

The place was amazing. The bar was built out of solid railway sleepers and the the surface was that smooth you could slide your beer bottle right down it cowboy style. The ceiling was carved wood. One match in the wrong place and the who building would have made some bonfire.

After lunch with the farmers, (they eventually resumed their conversations), we drove onto the lakehouse. After unloading the cargo, we made up our sleeping quarters and opened up the porch windows. A lovely day, the heat was a warm 72 degrees. After all that exertion, I cooled down with a beer and a read of Gordon Coopers autobiography "Leap of Faith". Then it was time for a paddle around the lake in the pedalo. Following this, we decided that a little more power was required, so we took out Nick's Mercury powered fishing boat. That's more like it...

Cindy joined us in the evening and then after dinner, Nick made up a traditional fire and we watched the sunset whilst enjoying hot dogs and toasted marshmallows, washed down with a few Sam Adams's. Perfect bliss. I can see why the American's go for this. In England, we would have had the Environmental health down about the bonfire and the police for drinking outside. Boy! Have we got it wrong over this side of the pond!

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