My family and I have been on many-a boat trip in our years as amateur mariners navigating our beloved schooner, (fittingly dubbed “Szo Far Szo Good”). The 50 foot vessel is home to our summer days, cruising Lake Michigan and enjoying some sun and H2O to rid our minds of frigid winters in Chicago. We had journeyed with organized boat trips before, (sometimes with 20+ other boats), courtesy of B & E Marine - and even once thought it was a great idea to bring along friends… a laughable nine people aboard the tight quarters. The summer of 2009 brought one of these excursions – this time to South Haven, Michigan, with just the family and my boyfriend Tom, and my brother’s friend Mike.
We crossed the lake into Michigan City, Indiana and set out for South Haven from there early in the morning the following sunrise. Tom and I occupied ourselves with intense Play Doh shaping contests during the wavy five hour ride. (The contest was dominated by yours truly). It wasn’t long before we were docked, changed, and hitting the beaches of South Haven. We basked in the hot sun all day, and capped it off with a pleasant barbeque dinner on the boat dock followed by long island ice teas atop a ship turned bar.
The next day’s wind brought choppy waters, which Tom and I embarrassingly thought our two person kayak rental could withstand. We continuously flipped into the water before giving up and settling for beach paddle ball and“skid boarding” – a dangerous hobby of attempting to surf on land where the waves hit the beach.
That night was the main event – the “Luau” B & E Marine threw on the dock…
We dressed in the most obnoxious tiki patterns we could find, got “laid”, and were serenaded by live music as we ate a delicious meal. We attempted but failed to silly string Zach as it was his birthday, and had a fun
night of karaoke in the South Haven beach town that evening.
The next day was the annual Dog Show/Festival along the water – where locals bring every kind of canine imaginable, enjoying the doggy stands and German Shepherd trick shows. The best laugh of the entire trip came soon after with a failed “Dog Dancing” performance by a crazy lady dressed in Indian garb. Despite a music malfunction, she performed embarrassing dance movements while her mischievous partner refused to follow along, ultimately running into the street mid-performance and almost becoming road kill.
Tom and I later rented bikes, cruising the cute shops and neighborhoods in town, and getting drunk on the beach. Our trip concluded the next day as we sailed back across the lake to Chicago. We floated on tubes in the Chicago harbor sipping frozen margaritas.