What makes a perfect day at the lake?

When the wind stiffens it blows the fog off the lake and replaces it with a biting spray. And when the wind slackens the sound of air rushing though the leaves and around the cabins is replaced with the crashing of the white caps that stand off from the more protected bay. Either way it is chilly and inhospitable, with ambient temperatures near 40 and a wind chill that might be close to freezing.

In other words, a perfect day at the lake.

This is the perfect weather if you want to be alone, or at least, not dragged into the obnoxious loud fantasy of some motor head’s idea of nature, or to have professional bass fishermen bumping into your dock as they struggle to pitch their dumbass lure into every nook and cranny while we stare at them wondering if they have no shame. I have not seen a water skier or even an intrepid wall-eye fisherperson in two days. For one moment I thought I heard a motor boat but it turned out to be the 50 knot wind doing something slightly different along the wooden docks.

Speaking of boat motors, the mystery of the returned motor complexified slightly when my father in law took a walk last weekend and inspected the ravine in which the motor was found. There were two previously missing gas tanks and, astonishingly, the previously missing battery charger. I don’t recall that the battery charger was missing for as long as the boat motor, so the theory that explains this can’t be the parsimonious one. People have been saying “Well, the simple explanation is X” or “The simple explanation is Y.” Nope. Nothing simple about this. Just watch the film “Feeling Minnesota” for your cultural reference point, and throw in a little plot from “Very Bad Things” and you’ve got the motor story.

Or, maybe it was just the chipmunks.

The two “baby loons” (I still think of them as babies even though they are all growd up now) are all that remains of the loon family, the adults having headed off to their intermediate gathering grounds… or even migrated out of the region. In case you were wondering, the babies do vocalize now and then, but not often. Yesterday a bald eagle was either aggressively buzzing the loons or fishing the waters they were in and the loons were making a small fuss, but nothing like what their parents would have done.

The Flock of Flickers that was here two weeks ago is gone, but the hairy/downy woodpeckers are still very active. The Canada geese have not been here for a few weeks (there was a resident pair with four offspring). Every now and then I see a tern or a gull appear like a ghost or a UFO in the cloud/fog.

Oh, and Derrick and his crew did come by to dig the trench. I’m glad I saw the process of installing the drainage thingies, but the trenching did not reveal anything of interest.

Uh oh… The wind has just shifted from the north. There is blue sky showing, but it is CANADIAN AIR!!! The temperature is dropping, the surf is up, and I’ve got to throw some more wood on the fire. Bye for now!

Comments

  1. #1 dean
    September 29, 2009

    Sounds wonderful. I’m jealous.

  2. #2 SQB
    September 29, 2009

    Clearly, someone went through a great deal of trouble to not have you using that boat for a while. The question is: Why?
    Is someone running some smuggling operation across the lake? Was the body of the vicar’s wife, who disappeared five years ago, dumped near your favourite fishing grounds? Is “Crazy One-Eyed Jack”, as the villagers call him, really all that crazy?

    I’m looking forward to the next instalment!

  3. #3 Kate from Iowa
    September 29, 2009

    You can sooooooo have those damned geese back…

  4. #4 k8
    September 29, 2009

    Great. Now I have to plan a fall vacation to Minnesota. After spending the whole summer at the disgusting lakes in South Dakota, I’m horribly jealous of the picture you just painted.

  5. #5 ancientTechie
    September 29, 2009

    My wife and I own a cottage on a northern Indiana lake where I have watched fishermen run their boats into our pier while casting lures onto the shore, the pier, the boat lift, even our martin house. I’ve been peppered with falling shot from duck hunters, while standing in front of the cottage. Honestly, I deeply appreciate the many offsetting joys of lake living, but I have to wonder: what the heck is wrong with people?

  6. #6 Charles
    September 29, 2009

    Heard the first honking of Canada Geese early this morning in Portland, Oregon.

  7. #7 llewelly
    September 29, 2009

    Speaking of boat motors, the mystery of the returned motor complexified slightly when my father in law took a walk last weekend and inspected the ravine in which the motor was found. There were two previously missing gas tanks and, astonishingly, the previously missing battery charger. I don’t recall that the battery charger was missing for as long as the boat motor, so the theory that explains this can’t be the parsimonious one. People have been saying “Well, the simple explanation is X” or “The simple explanation is Y.” Nope. Nothing simple about this.

    If you weren’t such a fundamentalist atheist, you’d recognize this as a sign, and let Jesus come inside you.

  8. #8 SQB
    September 30, 2009

    If you weren’t such a fundamentalist atheist, you’d recognize this as a sign, and let Jesus come inside you.

    Only if He uses a Holy Condom.