We struggled to put up our tent, and then Becky and Hal's next to it, as storm clouds gathered over the lake. Winds started whipping up and the sky blackened as the kids and Grandma scrambled into Honey the Camper and we put things away and battened down and zippered up into the tents. The winds screamed and howled and rushed horizontal while thunder rumbled and roared. The walls of the tent were flapping madly and it felt like we were going to take off into the air. Then the rain came pounding down, heavy, soaking, sheets of water, like 100 hoses pointed at us on "jet." The rain fly was starting to gather big pools of water and we ran around the tent smacking it to empty them. By then the water was coming in through the zippers, and I was dashing around rearranging our things to the center, when I heard Becky shrieking from the tent next to us. I zipped back a corner of the window enough to see that their tent had entirely collapsed in one corner, and was lurching and heaving into a crazy contortion. Then Hal came running out, and managed to straighten the tent pole as the rain blasted and soaked him to the skin. Thunder roared above him and flashes of light lit the sky. Ok, some of those flashes of light were from my camera:
The storm eventually passed over, and left us, our stuff and the entire campground soaked and muddy. Hal rigged up a tarp by stringing ropes across the trees, and we huddled underneath to have a soggy little birthday party and talk about what a storm that was.
It was the kind of storm that you don't get too often. The kind you will always remember. The kind of storm that would turn over a ship, causing the many wrecks that now lie on the bottom of Lake Huron in this area. Or the kind of storm that shakes them loose.
After a night of no sleep for me in the dampness listening to the rain dripping off the trees and the traffic rushing behind our campsite, the next day came along much nicer and eventually sunny. We rented canoes and paddled along the Pinnebog River to an isolated stretch of beach, full of interesting rocks, driftwood and seagulls. The adults relaxed while the kids played in the water. Cale was sitting in the surf enjoying the splash of the waves when something floated and bumped into his arm.
He grabbed it and pulled it up out of the water. He expected it to be driftwood but quickly identified it as a BONE.
It was black and smooth from being in the water. It looks like it might be a part of a knee.
We all marveled over this incredible find, and tucked it in with the beach towels before we made our way back to the camp. When we got there we found that many of the other campers had packed up and left, leaving the campground emptier and more peaceful. I noticed that several of those primo lakefront campsites were now empty, and I hopped onto my bike and rode over to the camp office to inquire within. It turns out that for a mere $5 per site you can switch over to a better spot. I would have bribed someone to leave for more than that! I was ecstatic when the rest of our party agreed to move. Since they are related to me they know that they would rather hear me congratulate myself over this good decision than bemoan the unfortunate features of our original location for yet another night.
That evening we sat around the campfire, situated so enchantingly alongside of the lake, and watched a distant boat make its way across the water. I joked that it was the ghost ship of Peter Shook, the lighthouse keeper who had been drowned at sea, coming to look for his lost leg bone. From that many bone theories emerged. If you think about it, what could be a logical story for a bone that large to be floating around in the Saginaw Bay? Mark looked up a picture of a human femur on his Iphone, it matched.
I hope that Cale's parents follow up on finding out what kind of bone that really is. Becky said she will work her many contacts to find someone who will know. If I find out more, I will post it here. Meanwhile, where do YOU think it came from?