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Clare: A Delightful Surprise, Part 1

As I mentioned, my sister is getting married this weekend.  Darwin and I decided to make a four-day weekend of it.  I wanted to visit Breckenridge, the small town where I spent my childhood and where Darwin has family in the local cemetery, and we thought we'd also bum around the area to see what was what.

Cadillac, where my sister lives, lies some distance from Breckenridge.  The small town of Clare, however, is halfway between the two, so we decided to headquarter there.  Were we in for a surprise!

I surfed around and found a place to stay on AirBnB.  Darwin and I much prefer renting an apartment or cottage to a hotel any day!  There was only one suitable--affordable--place in Clare, a place that billed itself as a small apartment downtown.  Darwin was unimpressed with the photos, which looked like a unit above a storefront, but I persuaded him.  After all, it was there or a motel.

When we arrived at the address, we found an 1880s red brick Victorian mansion, complete with square tower in the center.  The house, it turned out, had been carved up into apartments by the owner, who was renting them out as a bed and breakfast, but without the breakfast.  :)

Inside, we found a beautiful, self-contained apartment with polished knotty pine floors, high ceilings, bright paint, intact mouldings around the doors and ceiling, and decorated with antiques, including a radio from the 60s that still worked. (!)  I turned it on, and the tubes glowed amber while they warmed up.  It also had a full kitchen, complete with a formica table exactly like the one my grandparents bought in the 50s.  On top of the fridge was a green picnic basket that was a duplicate of one my mother had for years and years.  It was strange, like stumbling over pieces of my childhood.

We were delighted with the place!

After a few minutes of upacking, we set out to explore downtown Clare.

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