Belle Isle

I've only lived in Michigan for three years, but people who grew up around Detroit have a lot of memories of Belle Isle. With the zoo and aquarium closed due to budget constraints, there a lot of lost memories too. I hear that in the summer it's still quite busy and full of activity, but it certainly seemed quiet on this barely spring day. Maybe it was because I had these images from Sweet Juniper in my head as we headed over to the island, but it's hard not to feel a sense of loss in this place. The kids, though, had a great time- oblivious to what this place used to be or could be, and focused only on what it is now.

The Nature Zoo has frogs, turtles, snakes, and a bird viewing area. We saw some Cardinals and Red Winged Black Birds (which my friend told me means that spring is here!), and later outside we spotted a hawk on the fence! There is also a deer encounter where you can feed the deer through the fence. We headed over to the Conservatory where we wandered around the lush plants for a while. It was really a treat for the senses which have only seen evergreens for the last five months. And did I mention all this was free? Yeah, FREE!

The kids had a great time. The moms had a great time. I'm excited to have found a new place for the warmer days ahead.

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