Friday, August 22, 2014

Summers at the Lake

Thanks to Bill again for a great photo!

The beginning:
A silver morning. The lake wakes up slowly, the water a piece of foil stretched taut over glass, no sound anywhere. Then, the call of a loon in the distance; the rustle of a few leaves; the flop of a fish out of the water; the scrape of metal against a sink; a baby cries, refusing to give up a dream; the rasp of a sliding door, soft feet on the deck; a few wind ruffles on the lake; a tree branch sways; children's voices call to each other, mindless of others still sleeping; carefree steps slap on the dock, running to the end; quick splashes; the clap of a tool box shutting; water laps against the dock; the smell of coffee; feet churn through the gravel in the driveway; the squeal of bikes; neighbor calls to neighbor, "Goin' fishing?"; the thrum of a boat. The lake is awake.

The end:
As we drove back to Minneapolis, my eyes sought the old, sagging barns, white, pristine farmhouses with immaculate yards, and the numerous lakes and sloughs. Even the sight of the turkey ranches with white gobblers strutting in their pens made me sigh with a silent good-bye. I looked for the spires of old churches with cemeteries behind them; the cornfields and soybean fields; the cattails lining the marshes; the ducks forming a V as they flew overhead. I watched the thunderheads on the horizon giving a promise of rain; the lines of trees planted as windbreaks long ago; the one-street towns with Walmarts at their outskirts; the grain silos next to the railroad tracks heading for Willmar; the Faribou Woolen Mills in Litchfield selling their warm winter blankets; antique shops laden with farm equipment and depression glass; big green John Deere tractors for sale in large lots along the highway; old tractors chugging down dirt roads. And then, as our car flew along the highway, more and more small towns closer together, until we reached the outskirts of Minneapolis. We headed home and the lake receded to a shimmering memory.

Check out to see where our lake adventures began.

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