02 October 2009

Door County - Madison and arrival

We had a leisurely morning, got up around 8, showered (sans shampoo ‘cause we forgot to pack any and the Motel 6 doesn’t provide it), checked out and went to Burger King for breakfast. We ate, finished the jumble and most of the crossword in the paper then hit the road to Madison at 9:30.

In Madison, we met a high school classmate of mine at Dobra Tea Shop. Anita and I met for the first time in about 5th or 6th grade and haven’t seen each other in something like 19 years so we had a lot of catching up to do. It was a lot of fun and Dobra and the State Street area were very cool places to be.

We left the tea shop and walked a bit up and down State Street, shopping for a lunch spot. We decided we weren’t really hungry yet and moseyed on toward Door County in the rain. Nothing new there. We drove the night before in pretty constant rain and it’s rained off an on all day. The clouded sky is nice for driving and at least in the daylight, the rain isn’t so bad. But last night in the dark, on strange roads, in the rain and with truck traffic, it wasn’t a lot of fun.

We arrived in Sister Bay and found our B&B…the Woodenheart Inn. The inn is a log-style home with lots of cute landscaping, nestled into the woods.

We were greeted most graciously by our hosts for the weekend, John and Judy. They had a pot of hot spiced cider on for us and, Boy! did that hit the spot after the chill and rain. They showed us around the great room with the 2-story stone fireplace, pointed out the deck and gazebo off the back of the house, the walking trails leading of into the woods, the dining room where we’d have breakfast in the mornings, and then to our room…the Heart Room…one of the 3 upstairs accommodations.

All 5 rooms have a theme (heart, apple, cherry, garden and Millie, I think) and were mostly decorated in red and white. Our room had hearts stenciled around the upper part of the walls, wrought iron or hammered metal hearts on the curtain swags and towel bars and other little heart knick-knacks scattered tastefully about. The bed had a great, white quilt over the bed and a hearts (of course) quilt folded over the foot of the bed. We had a red/white gingham loveseat on one wall, a nice closet with extra pillows, hangers, a white noise machine and a flashlight. Everything was so comfy and nicely appointed we just kind of wandered around with our jaws hanging open at how wonderful the place was.

We headed back out to the car to get our bags. John told us there were umbrellas behind the front door and to help ourselves…he noticed we had run to the inn in the rain without any. We brought the bags in, hung some things in the closet then went out to supper. We ate at the Sister Bay Café (recommended by Judy). It was a Scandinavian themed café on the main street through town. Alan had almond-crusted walleye filets; I had the special which was salmon chowder and a lake perch sandwich, because I wasn’t all that hungry. When my food came, it was on a plate that was half fresh fruit salad…big chunks of cantaloupe, honeydew, pineapple and strawberries. It was more than I could possibly eat so I didn’t eat the bun, just the fruit and fish. It was way tasty.

After supper we waddled back out to the car and back to the inn. We were again met at the door by Judy, who offered us hot tea or coffee. We declined (politely) and decided to relax and read in the great room. She asked if we’d like a fire. We would! So John built us one. We got our books and sat on the couch and decided we didn’t feel like reading, we just wanted to sit and listen to the crackling fire.

Not long after, Joie (as in Joey…I’m not sure why he spells it that way) and Dawn (a couple from near Green Bay) came in. We all introduced ourselves and Dawn snuggled up to the fire as she was chilled. John pointed out the decanter of apricot brandy and glasses on a side table and told us to help ourselves. Dawn wanted hot tea, so John brought her a carafe of hot water and basket of teas.

A while later, Debbie and her daughter Rachel came in from a trolley tour…more introductions and fireside chats. Then Joie and Dawn headed to their room.

We had all commented on how gracious and accommodating John and Judy were…always asking if we wanted or needed anything, ready with advice on restaurants or local attractions, offering umbrellas or maps or hot drinks or anything we might need. We joked that if we asked them to make the rain stop, somehow they’d see to it.