Musings,  This Life...

Nan in Search of Clarity–Day 9

We ended up staying at the lake an extra day–it was raining and stormy and the thought of packing up just didn’t appeal, so we decided to hang out until tomorrow morning. So glad we did because we got to spend an extra beer-30 with our pals, which brings me so much happiness. And you know, right now, I’m very selfish about stuff that makes me happy. I need the happy.

A break in the rain allowed for a walk–not as far as yesterday because the break didn’t last long, but we did the park road and down to the docks. The lake has cleared some with the storm and the water was being whipped up to little waves by the wind. Our bay is the second largest on the lake and it’s always beautiful. It looks like a misshapen balloon–most of it is a large circle, but there’s an outcropping of harbor just as you come into it from the main lake. We’ve sorta become the “party bay,” and on hot summer days, it’s not unusual to see anywhere from 30 to 50 boats anchored around the bay. The music is loud, but the shouts of the children and the laughter is louder as folks dive off their boats into the water. It’s fun to sit on the dock and watch the party–even more fun to take your boat out and join the revelers.

Kate adored riding on our pontoon–she scoped out the most comfortable seat, poured a glass of wine, and stretched out to soak up the sun. Like me, she loved to swim and never worried about simply jumping in with a shout. In June, the water has just started warming up, but if it’s a hot summer, by mid-July, we’ve got a giant bathtub. That’s one of the reasons, I love our lake, but we weren’t raised on warm Midwest lakes.

charlie's b-day 057Our mom used to take us to Michigan every summer–I mean, nearly every weekend all summer long. She’d get home from the hospital on Thursday night, expecting us kids to have the camper packed and ready to go. We’d pile in the car and head north. By 9 p.m., we’d be setting up camp at Muskegon State Park or one of the other state parks along the Lake Michigan shore. We spent the whole weekend on the beach and in the water. Mom taught us all to swim in Lake Michigan, and babies, that is some damn cold water! It didn’t stop us as kids–we dove in and body surfed if there were waves of any size.

A few years ago, Kate and PJ and I and our husbands rented a cottage up at Crystal Lake in Michigan–a place we’d spent a lot of time as kids at the Disciples Camp and other church family camps. We sisters were so excited to show our spouses all the places we’d gone to as kids. We nearly drove them crazy with all the memories. One day, we rented a pontoon boat and spent the whole day cruising the lake. Now Crystal Lake is a huge spring-fed crystal-clear lake and is so freaking cold, it make Lake Michigan seem like a heated pool.

We sisters all wanted to swim, but yeesh, it was so hard to even think about jumping into that water. I was hemming and hawing about it, going to the edge of the deck and then backing away–it looked inviting, but I knew I’d freeze my ass off if I dove in. We did the “You go,” “no, you go” thing for a few minutes, then Kate blew a breath into her bangs and said, “I’m done,” and walked away. I teetered on the deck, seriously contemplating jumping in when suddenly, I was in! When I came up, freezing and spluttering, Kate was kneeling on the seat laughing hysterically. She’d pushed me! “What the hell?” I cried, shivering and paddling like mad to try to get warm. “Somebody had to get your butt in there,” She called over the hoots of laughter coming from PJ and the husbands. “I had to do it–obviously you weren’t going to go in without a little shove.”

I never did get her back for that…

Five things I’m grateful for today:

  1. Time with good friends
  2. The water softener is fixed
  3. NPR
  4. Salad season is back
  5. Watching Husband snooze in the big chair–he’s so relaxed