Last week I had the chance to do some recruiting for General Mills at Michigan State. This gave me the opportunity to see some family and friends. It was a great trip and I am grateful to Linz for taking care of the girls for 4 days while I was away.
I arrived Monday around 11:30am. I got my car and called up my Mom to see what we should do. I had a couple hours to stay in Ypsi before I had to head up to East Lansing to meet my work peeps. My Mom tells me that one of the local restaurants, Haabs, is having their "Back to the '30s" day of pricing. Basically the restaurant was founded in 1934 and once a year they have a day where they throwback their prices to what they were in 1934. So you wind up getting an awesome Fried Chicken dinner for $.40, including fries, biscuit and bread. You can get a spahetti dinner for $.30, and some other stuff I can't remember.
So my Mom wants to go for old times sake. I say for old times sake because for many years as a kid, all 8 of us would wait in line for hours in the sometimes nice, sometimes cold October night to get that cheap good food. I think our wait was always longer because tables of 8 are hard to come by when the restaurant is swamped with people coming in to get the good deal.
So I do a drive by the restaurant since it is on the way to my Moms and I see people waiting outside and my first thought is it looks like a soup kitchen line. I realize that the poor kid I used to be has come a long way from those days of going to Haabs and that being the best meal because we never ate out. And part of me does not even want to approach those memories so I tell my Mom that I have my hesitations, but if she wants to go we will. She does, so we hop in the car with my sis and nephew and we head out. We park and go get in line. At this point in the day it is sunny and really nice out. We stand in line outside the shoe store that I remember as a kid being there. It isnt a shoe store anymore, but I still remember in their store display they had a whole window filled with heels and soles of shoes, just piled up. We wait in line with all these old timers from Ypsi. This lady behind us keeps trying to talk to us and we are just trying to talk amongst ourselves since we are trying to catch up on our lives. We wait about an hour in line and finally get to the door. As I remember from being a kid, right in the entrance, they have a giant pumpkin. I think how cool it is that they still do that. We get to the point in line where we get our table and the same guy that I remember as a kid being the greeter is there. He is wearing a tuxedo and top hat, just like he used to so long ago. I think that is cool. Here is a pic of him helping us at our table:
We sit down and nostalgia surrounds me. The pewter plates that I remember, the paper menu on the table, the room crowded with people eating, it is all way familiar. I took a pic of the place setting and glass:
We order our food and it comes out looking amazing. I was starving at that point and fries, chicken and bread have never tasted so good. I ordered a grilled cheese sandwich with tomato, onion, and dipping sauce too just because it sounded good. We eat and all enjoy our meals thoroughly, here is Beths food, Moms food, and Riley:
All in all, I am so glad we went. The wait was pleasant, the food was great, and it was SO Ypsilanti. I try to forget and discount my past in many ways, and I thought this would have been something that I did not want to revisit, but it turned out to truly be a "Blast from the Past" and I am glad Mom wanted to go.
So after that experience, I went up to State for the next two days for interviews with candidates. Saw some friends and came back to Ypsi Wednesday night. Was there in time to see Mom after her surgery and spent all day Thursday with her.
On my way back from the hospital to the airport, I realized that I would be driving by Old Denton road, between Rawsonville and Belleville road exits off I-94. Old Denton road is a dirt road that has this really old cemetery on it and not much else. I was taken there once by a friend who grew up near there. She took me there to show me a real witch’s grave. Basically the story goes this lady was accused of being a witch back in the 1830’s and is buried there. Her grave according to my friend had a plaque on it stating that she was accused of witchcraft and some details behind what she did. By the time I saw it, the plaque was removed a long time ago, but the marks at the bottom of the gravestone show where the plaque would have been. The gravestone itself has a hand with a finger pointing down symbol on it, supposedly symbolizing her going to Hell. Several other gravestones in the cemetery, and even some cemetaries here in Minnesota have a typical symbol of a hand with a finger pointing up, symbolizing the souls ascent to heaven. So I realize that now would be a great chance to go and take a picture of the Witchs Grave, for posterity sake. Mind you, it is a cold, windy, and dark October night. I get off the exit, knowing I cant spend too much time looking for it, since I have to get to my flight and still return my rental car. I find Old Denton Road, which is still dirt, and drive down until I get to the cemetery. I park the car and leave it running in case a ghost or something else decides to get me. I hop the fence and with my cellphone as my light, quickly search the graves to find the Witch’s Grave. After a few minutes I finally find it. I take out my camera and snap a few shots, here they are:
Notice the finger pointing down as stated, as well as two white holes at the bottom where the plaque used to be.
I take a shot of a grave with the finger pointing up as a reference for you to compare the Witch's Grave to:
Regardless of whether this is all true or not, it is kind of fun to have a bit of Halloween spookiness adventure. I packed as much as I could in those couple days and was reminded what a fun place Michigan can be this time of year. I am glad I grew up here.
PEACE AND HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!!!