Today I dropped off my visiting friend at her family’s house in Holland. Instead of taking M-6 back to my home in Kentwood, I decided to make a detour and go north towards the city. When driving towards Grand Rapids on 196-East, after passing the Lake Michigan Drive exit 75, for the briefiest moment, I am granted a beautiful overlook of the skyline of the city.
Senior year of college, I would drive from my fast-food job in Grandville back to my apartment in the city late at night. My crappy car had no air conditioning, so I rolled down the windows; the night breeze flooded the car and whipped my hair around my ears. The loud wind and the cool air helped me relax after a long day. And then I rounded the corner after passing the Lake Michigan Drive exit, and my beautiful city appeared almost out of nowhere, bright with its night lights. I gasped in awe and then sighed relief. I was home.
Even now, the sight still takes my breath away. It appears to me as the Emerald City must have appeared to Dorothy in *The Wizard of Oz.* It’s a magical place of possibility, and I’ll happily skip towards it to discover its treasures.
Photo credit: [City of Grand Rapids](http://grcity.us/police-department/Office%20of%20Film,%20Music%20and%20Special%20Events/Pages/default.aspx)
*This lookout is at a curvy part of the highway where traffic is often heavy. Please use caution as you admire the view.*