By Barbara Falconer Newhall
Eagle Top is private property now. Somebody owns the steep sandy dune on the shores of Lake Michigan that my cousin Jeanie and I used to clamber up as kids. It’s a 45-degree-angle climb, so steep that no matter how fit you were you huffed and puffed the whole way up.
For me and my cousin all that panting and sweating meant we were have a genuine adventure. And Jeanie and I loved adventure.
We weren’t the first to climb that hill. Our mothers had climbed it as kids. So had our grandmother and great-grandmother. So had generations of resorters from Chicago and Detroit beginning early in the 20th century. At first they arrived in the area by boat. Later they came by train. Then bus. Now there’s a freeway.
When our mothers were girls the local Indians still used the footpath along its base and climbed to the top to make baskets.
Nowadays there’s no need to climb Eagle Top. Its owners get to the top by a motorized funicular.
Before I headed to Michigan I emailed Jeanie. Did she want to get together and visit some of our old haunts, like Eagle Top? Was she up for an adventure?
Of course she was.
Some things haven’t changed.
If you enjoyed this post, you might like “Impermanence — Everything Changes and So Can I.” Anything to add to this post? Feel free to comment.