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Dream Finale in Michigan

Tuesday, Jul 17, 2007 from Burlington, Vermont

The states are counting down fast, really fast! Since my thoughts lately have been surrounded by getting back to Michigan maybe it’s time to make a post about what I think would be the coolest stuff to do to wrap up my trip. Michigan is home. Michigan is by far one of the best states in the nation and everywhere I have been I’ve tried to encourage people to check out Michigan sometime. I’ve got a lot of Michigan pride, especially for the Upper Peninsula. Now I like to dream big, always have, always will. I ain’t lyin’. So here are a few things which I think would be the absolute best ways to finish up my trip in Michigan.

Go to the top of the Mackinac Bridge – The Mackinac Bridge is one of the biggest icons Michigan has to offer and sadly not enough Michiganders make it across to the Upper Peninsula. One of the absolutely coolest things that I could do is go to the top. They’re always bring people up there, it’s just a matter of pitching my story and getting in touch with the right people. One of my favorite photos of the Mackinac Bridge is one that was taken from the very top when a freighter was passing under the bridge several hundred feet below. This would be fantastic. Can anyone out there make this happen?

Hang out with the Red Wings – Since I started skating when I was five or six years old I have idolized the Red Wings. Hockey was my life as a kid, being at the rink, collecting hockey cards, watching the wings play on TV, I lived for it (and still do between all my other passions). One of the greatest gifts ever was finally getting to see the Red Wings play for my first time live and in person for my 22nd birthday with my family. Living eight hours away in the UP it was just always hard to work out. I had waited 17 long years for that to come true! There would be nothing better than to spend a day with the Red Wings organization. Meet Scotty Bowman or Steve Yzerman, maybe even meet Mike Ilitch. How cool would it be to maybe hang out with the players in the locker room, see the behind the scenes workings of the team and maybe get a few tips from Tomas Holmstrom. Of all the things I can think of doing this would be the ultimate dream come true since I was a kid. I would be stuck in awe for weeks and turn into a little boy meeting his hero. I’ll keep dreaming!

Hang out with the Governor for a day – I’ve seen a lot of state capitol buildings on this trip, but what I really want to see is behind closed doors. Hang with the governor, learn about what it takes to run a state from the inside, learn about campaigning, go to lunch, go to the governor’s mansion, spend a day following Governor Granholm around. It would be spectacular. And I would love to share my experience with elected state (or national) politicians. Anyone with connections high up in Lansing?

The grand tour of Jeep – I would love to see the process of designing a car, to engineering, production, and marketing. What’s the process? How long does it take from the very first notion of a new model to the first one arriving at your local dealership? I don’t won’t want to see my pretty Jeep Compass go. Being in that vehicle has become home to me. It’s a sensational feeling to step in the Compass and just drive! It’d be cool to meet the big wigs at Chrysler. Michigan is home of the automobile and I will have spent over an entire month of time in the last year in my Jeep. I simply gotta see how it’s done.

Hang out with the MSU elites – Even though I spent a fortune going to MSU for five years and gave them every penny in my name, for some reason I feel like I still need to give back to them. And though I can’t give them a single cent after this trip I would love to share my experience with President Simon about what it is to be a Spartan across this country and how to inspire current students to pursuit their dreams. It would be great to see how she lives as president of the greatest university in the country (that’s right!). Maybe even sit in the president’s box at an MSU football game, it will be football season when I return! MSU has been a key factor in making this trip a success. Maybe I could at least get a lunch with the president. Something equally as cool would be to meet up with Tom Izzo. He’s quite arguably the most famous Yooper around the country. I think it’d be inspiring to sit in his office and learn about his passion for winning and building character. I think it could happen.

Those would all be some pretty amazing ways to finish off the trip in Michigan. I’ve got about two months to make one (or all) of them happen. Regardless of what happens it’s going to be an amazing homecoming! Everyone back home in Michigan, I’m looking forward to it! And thanks for helping make this all happen.

Blog Date Posted: Jul 17, 2007 | 909 words | comments 3 Comments
Comment by Molly
From UP and MSU, MI

Even though I didn't get to talk to Izzo, I did get to listen to him speak a few times at the Tip-off Cafe at Breslin when I was a caterer. It still felt pretty cool to be in the same room with him. I almost spilled coffee on him at one point, as I didn't see him walking towards me. tehee Anyway, he definitely is the most famous Yooper, I would say.

Comment by Aunt Shirley
From East Leroy, MI

Now I know you were not an English major at MSU, so I guess we could let this get by! In your thoughts about spending a day with "The Gov" You mentioned behind "clothes doors". I hope you really met "closed doors"! Your version sounds like spending time in a closet! I sure have been enjoying your travel logs and pictures. Am so proud to tell folks about my "great nephew". Keep up the good work, you are making us all very proud! Love, Aunt Shirley

Comment by Bugsy
From State College, PA

Thanks Aunt Shirley! I'm pretty bad about proof reading and editing my blog entries, I like to keep them raw. But it has been corrected!