Oh, the beautiful simplicity of sun streaming through the kitchen curtains at the cottage on a lovely summer morning. How I've missed it!
That first visit to the lake after the cottage has been closed up for months is always a little nerve-wracking. What if a critter got in the house (it has happened before -- what a mess!)? What if a tree fell on the garage, or worse, the house itself? What weird new thing will the next door neighbor to the south have done to his yard? (You can be sure it's not landscaping -- he basically back-topped the whole thing after cutting all the trees down). But you drive in, see our little house and all's well!
This year's open found no problems -- just a bit of pretty darned nippy weather! After a week at home that included 90 and high 80s temps and a rain and windstorm that took down barns in neighboring rural areas, the temps dropped across the state. For us that meant we arrived to a house that was pretty chilly. But a hearty fire not only took off the chill but warmed the house.
And waking up it was pretty darned cold! Most of our first day we stayed in. I'm reading a fascinating book called "Les Parisiennes," which is about the women of France (for the most part, Paris) during the occupation. It's a powerful book and I'll write more about it next month for "Paris in July."
Finally it warmed up enough to take a walk. The swamp is high this year.
But I certainly had some good walks and saw some lovely things. Like these butterflies.
They were so happy skipping around in the woods!
At one point I had to stop as I passed by a lilac tree in full bloom and smelling fabulous. Another swallowtail butterfly was posing!
We brought our food so we wouldn't have to go out or to the store. I'm still working off my pasta sauce made from last summer's farm market tomato bushel and that was a warm and hearty welcoming meal for our first night. For the second, pork tenderloin on the grill. Good chicken on the third.
There's always much to do on that first visit -- turning on the water, raking the pine needles that have fallen all winter, setting up the porch, making up the beds, cleaning and dusting surfaces left untended for months. There were still one or two blooms left on the red dogwood. We always miss them as they are early bloomers, so that was like a little present.
After a bit of a hunger strike, Lizzie was happy to be out and about.
So was Rick.
It was good to see the nice neighbors. And to hear the birds.
Of course there was time for fun...
...and for games! (I had a good night; the next night, it was Rick's turn to win!)
And lots of time to relax!
Some of us really know how to relax!
On our final night we were treated to a group of Canada Geese. There were so many that they covered the beach near the water covering three cottages! I counted at least 36 and I know there were some that were blocked by tall grasses and other things.
Many were goslings, getting big.
They seemed to stick with their "families." If they strayed too far, they were called back.
I have to say that I love seeing these beautiful birds on the water. Pooping on the beach? Not quite so much!
Soon I'll be able to practice my hermit existence up here -- the ultimate social distancing.
If we can only get the grocery thing right next time!
And, on another note, if you'd like to travel back in time with me to the halcyon days of summer at the lake, please check out my essay on "Summer Love Notes." It's a look back in time at life at the lake before the days of internet and social media, when kids made their fun in the water and playing games!
Sharing this week with: Share Your Style / Pink Saturday
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