Shannon here: Women’s fiction author, Karla Akins shares her 25th anniversary trip with her husband plus a chance to win an e-book copy of her latest release, The Pastor’s Wife Wears Biker Boots. Comment on any post dated August 28 – 30 to get your name in the drawing. Deadline: September 7th, 11:59 pm central time. Here’s Karla:
When my husband and I reached our 25th Wedding Anniversary year six years ago, we took a romantic trip on our motorcycles to Mackinac Island and stopped in Frankenmuth on the way. At Frankenmuth we stopped at Bronner’s, a gigantic Christmas store. The reason we stopped was to pick out ornaments for our vow renewal ceremony. We were married December 3, and I wanted to decorate a winter wonderland for our “wedding.” (You can read about it here: http://eddiekarla.blogspot.com/ .) We picked out ornaments to commemorate our wedding day including a set of doves, musical instruments (because we’re musicians), wedding bells for our canopies (going into the sanctuary and on the platform) and a set of motorcycle ornaments.
From there we traveled to Mackinaw City at the base of the Mackinac Bridge on the shores of the Straits of Mackinac, where the Great Lakes Huron and Michigan meet. We drove across the Mighty Mac, a five-mile long suspension bridge that connects Michigan to its Upper Peninsula. We only rode over it to say we did. Not everyone can say they drove their motorcycle over such a mammoth bridge over a massive body of water! The bridge is constructed of grates for the road, so you can see down to the water while you’re on it. But I loved riding over it and was grinning the entire time.
Here’s a video I took of us crossing it a few years later in our car with our kids: http://youtu.be/DmZPjzgVNm0On the other side we learned it was the bridge’s birthday! It was 25 years older than our wedding day! Signs of its birthday were everywhere and I bought a motorcycle patch for a memorial of our special adventure:
It was so romantic to be there together. Alone. Experiencing a thrilling adventure together. It really bonded us.
We spent the evening dining at a local seafood restaurant and came back to the hotel and fed the seagulls from our balcony. It was so nice just to be together without any interferences. Just writing about this makes me realize we need to go on another trip ALONE again soon! (The view from our room)
The next day, we took a ferry to Mackinac Island where we toured the car-free island on a horse-driven bus. I love Mackinac Island. Somewhere in Time is one of my favorite movies. I visited the island many times but have never stayed at the Grand Hotel. Doing so is on my bucket list!
We ate dinner where Hemmingway once dined because I’m a writer and was hoping some of his DNA was still in there and would rub off. His review of the place is written on the window: “‘A clean, well-lighted place’ Ernest Hemmingway.’”
I highly recommend a romantic trip there. To save pennies one can stay in Mackinaw City rather than on the island and still experience the island fully. But I recommend venturing out into the less touristy areas, taking all the tours and visiting the historical places.
We spent time holding hands and stealing kisses on the shores of Lake Michigan and Lake Huron.
The rain was warm and we didn’t mind. We were celebrating our love with a trip we would remember forever. A trip we still talk about and want to make again.
About Karla: Karla Akins is a pastor’s wife, mother of five, and grandma to five beautiful little girls. She lives in Northeast Indiana with her husband, twin teenage boys with autism, mother-in-law with Alzheimer’s and three rambunctious dogs. When she’s not writing she’s dreaming of riding her motorcycle through the mountains or finding treasure.
About the book – The Pastor’s Wife Wears Biker Boots: Pastor’s wife, Kirstie Donovan, lives life in a fishbowl, so when she hops on the back of a bright pink motorcycle, tongues start to wag at the conservative, century-old First Independent Christian Community Church of Eels Falls. Kirstie loves roaring down a road less traveled by most women over forty, but she’s not just riding her bike for the fun of it. Kirstie has a ministry.
However, certain church members have secrets to hide, and when God uses Kirstie’s ministry to fill the pews with leather-clad, tattooed bikers, those secrets could be exposed…and some will stop at nothing to hide the truth. Join Kirstie and her motorcycle “gang” – two church matrons and a mouthy, gum-smacking non-church member – as they discover that road-toughened bikers are quite capable of ministering to others, and faith is fortified in the most unexpected ways.
Come back August 28th for Karla’s romantic real life interview!