Places I’ll show you if You’ll Promise Not to Go There

I lived in the city for more years than I’ve lived anywhere else, but now I live in the country.  Some say I live in the wilderness but that’s an exaggeration.  I live in a place where few people live but it’s hardly unpopulated.

The city, such as it is, isn’t far away, but I go there only when I have to.  I do this by choice, not because I dislike people but because I dislike crowds.  I shy away from too much noise and find I think better without the distractions the city can’t help but drag in.

I’m not a hermit by any stretch, but when I think about the places I might want to revisit they’re the places my family and I have discovered and selfishly want to keep to ourselves

In my secret places there are no campfires, no beer cans, no human-borne flotsam to spoil their  beauty.  There are some signs that humans have been there but nobody broadcasts them.  We had to find them on our own.


I call this “Mossy Glade”. It is a place here on our island, not far from a park trail, but you have to be looking for it in order to find it. I like to pretend that I discovered it, but of course it was there long before I came along.

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This is a scene not unlike any you might have seen somewhere else, but from this vantage point it’s a one-of-a-kind. This is the place, wide and open, from which we can watch Northern Lights.



This is a swimming hole on a river that flows into Lake Superior. It is one of those places that generations of people know about and come back to, but its location is guarded against outsiders. If you thought to look, you would see that the side of the road has been carved into a pull-off, and that every now and then a car is parked there.  But nothing about it would make you curious enough to stop and check it out. Nothing to see here. Move along.


This is a boardwalk and beach at the mouth of the St. Mary’s River. It is early spring and there are still ice floes on the water. Nobody else was there. Guess who was happy about that?


This is what is left of an old cemetery in the Keweenaw Peninsula. It is near what was once a thriving turn-of-the-century mining community. The ground is almost totally covered with myrtle and thimbleberry bushes, and the narrow, winding path seems eons old. The few headstones still visible are for people who came to this place from western Europe and the British Isles to start a new life during the copper mining boom more than a hundred years ago.

There is a small sign at the edge of the road, but most people drive right by. That suits those of us who make the pilgrimage nearly every year. It appears untouched and mystical and in need of quiet, and we wander through quickly without speaking above a whisper.

These are just a few of my favorite secret places.  I may come back and do this again sometime.  I have a feeling I’m not the only one who treasures private, special places.   I won’t ask you to tell if you don’t ask me.

But pictures would be nice.

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About constantcommoner

Ramona Grigg. Freelancer, blogger, essayist, photographer, dreamer,
This entry was posted in NaBloPoMo, Nature and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Places I’ll show you if You’ll Promise Not to Go There

  1. My grandmother grew up in Michigan. I wonder if she saw the Northern Lights? That is most enviable. Here at the beach, I have a friend who has posted photos, on Facebook, of a secret beach she knows of. Her family goes there, but she won’t say where it is.

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  2. It’s like favorite fishing holes, only different. Nothing dies in my secret places. By the way, I took my banner picture at the lookout over the Lower Tahquamenon Falls in the U.P. I like the idea that anyone, even constant commoners, can marvel at places of beauty without breaking the bank.

    And, of course, I want people to see how beautiful our Pure Michigan is. (I just don’t want to find them in my secret places!)

    Where did your grandmother live in Michigan?

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  3. Lisa Stevens says:

    Beautiful pictures – I love secret places. I have a few of my own – maybe I will pull out some pictures after the holidays.

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  4. I wish I knew where my grandma lived in Michigan. It was on a farm, and I think somewhere near Detroit (probably a suburb now).

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  5. Enjoyed this reading about your secret places. Here’s a link to a special place on the Ozarks I’ll share if you promise not to go there. http://wp.me/p2VEN9-bq I always feel conflict when hiking in a wilderness area. A good trail can raise awareness and end up helping protect an area but too much traffic can damage a place I really do want to keep to myself.

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    • That cabin is wonderful, OMH. Lucky you for coming across it. But never fear–I’m 76 years old. My hiking days are probably over! (A mile a day is about the best I can do, but I try to do it every day.)

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