It's been a rough month. We got home from the lake October 4 and two days later, Rick began his cycling trip from Lansing to Ohio. The next day I hit the road driving. It wasn't a lot of time at home to regroup or even unpack.
We got back from Cleveland on the 12th. I dropped Rick off to stay with a friend in Detroit and two days later, after doc appointments, I was off to join him for four days of toddler sitting. When we returned, I had a series of six doc appointments, prepping for my upcoming art sale and dealing with a cat who has decided that thinking outside of the box is acceptable social behavior.
While he has been north, I thought about the summer's sunny days and long walks. The color on my walking path was slowly changing into patches of brilliant color when I left for the season, a sure sign that an early fall was on the way. Now, Rick says most of it is gone.
As the year continues and moves into winter, I will be remembering wonderful swims and flowers that were, if not lush, colorful and cheery.
As I savor the pesto I made from the last of the basil, I will think of that glorious plant that seemed to grow endlessly, surprising with the benign neglect I sometimes gave it when I'd go home for a week or more and no one was there to water it.
I will spend a good deal of time thinking of our good neighbor Jim, who made this lovely birdhouse for me. And much of that thinking will be channeling positive energy his way. "Don't sell. Don't sell. Please don't sell." And maybe he'll wait another year or two. Or forever.
I'll be remembering the things I love most in the cottage, many of which have stories connected to them. I love this wooden diorama of a rustic cottage...
...and this one as well.
The details are wonderful. I've had the first for as long as I can remember. I'm not sure where Mom found it. The other I found at a sale years ago. When I look at them I find myself imagining fairy tales and stories set in far away places. They are a little bit of magic. When I see them each spring, it is like coming home.
I'm sure I will see more geese on their southern journey at home. But I'll be thinking of the flotilla of 100 or more geese gathered on or near my shore at dusk, not to mention the duck families that faithfully stopped in each day.
And of course I'll think of Harry North, who will soon be headed south, if he hasn't already left. I rather suspect he already has.
I will look back and think of how relaxed Lizzie was here -- well, once we got her out of her carry box. Or in it. And thinking INSIDE the box then.
All that bird watching. But alas, Stuart has remained a mystery. Perhaps he met his doom with Rick.
I will miss the lovely times I shared with Rick here, which were fewer than summers past because of his obligations at home. I will not miss his kidney stone issues (that was a bad week) but I don't think I'll ever forget the view of the room they put me while he had his surgery. After the stress of that trip to the hospital looking at that water was the most glorious thing imaginable.
I will miss the sounds of the lake. The waves, the putt-putt of smaller boats (the jet skis, not so much), and even the wind. I can listen to the Interlochen classical station I love here from at home but it won't be quite the same. And I will miss the unstructured time to do more or less whatever I wanted when I wanted. Read. Paint. Felt. Walk. No TV apart from the occasional streamed video. I always think I might try to pull that off at home. I never do.
We'll have delicious dinners at home -- but it won't be quite the same as enjoying grilled dinner on the porch as we watch the sunset, sipping whatever wine suits our fancy that evening.
And, I will miss these. Almost every evening, a glorious light show. No charge. Just sit back and enjoy.
I will miss summer's sweet timetable. Eat when you are hungry. Sleep when you are tired. Revel in quiet sounds of nature or human-made music.
When I was a little girl, coming north with my parents decades ago, we would leave and I would cry, sob, in the car for the first 20 miles of the trip. It wouldn't surprise me if I did it again.
And, as a matter of fact, I did.