Monday, October 6, 2014

Another Perfect Day

It would be so easy, and is so tempting, to rant and rave about what is going on in the world. But today I am basking instead in the afterglow of yet another perfect day in my life. The truth is, I am one of the luckiest people I know. I have had many, many perfect days throughout my life. Almost every single one of them revolves around sharing something beautiful with people I love and love being with, and taking joy in the life surging around me. Yesterday, Frank and Claire Marie took their boat out on the lake one more time before prepping for winter. Diane and I had Xander for an overnight, and they invited us to join them. it was our first lake trip this year, and likely their last (though if the weather holds there may be one more down the line). Before too long the annual ritual of draining the top off the lake will begin, done to accommodate the spring runoff in April and May, when the lake is allowed to fill again. Boating gets to be a scarce proposition in October, but yesterday the weather was – for fear of overusing the word – perfect. We set sail, well, technically, we fired up the motor, around noon and headed south along the shoreline. We saw remarkable “dream” houses and magnificent vistas along the way fifteen miles south toward Wild Horse Island. Wild Horse Island is a wonder in itself, and in three years here Di and I had never gotten a close look at it. Over 5000 acres of protected land is home to bighorn sheep, deer and birds of prey: we saw a Golden Eagle soaring above our heads but he would not stay still long enough for a picture. It is the wild horses that give the island its name. Legend has it that one tribe of Native Americans used to hide their horses on the island when another tribe threatened to raid them, and that some horses were never recaptured, leading to an independent, natural breeding program. Today the population is closely monitored and protected. Seeing horses on the island, especially from a boat encircling it, is rare. In fact, Frank told us he had never seen any, and he’d been in these waters often. Beginner’s luck: off in the distance on the top of a rise we saw five or six grazing in the warm October Sun. Even so far away, it was breathtaking, a real privilege. From Wild Horse, we hustled back up and across the lake to Bigfork, parked the boat, walked down Electric Avenue, and had a very late lunch. By the time we got back to the dock at Lakeside and loaded the boat back on its trailer, it was nearly six pm and the sun was beginning to make its exit for the day. In all, the day was totally satisfying, all the more so to think that Alexander’s two sets of grandparents not only are close at hand, but actually enjoy each other’s company. Meanwhile, Oddball Magazine published another of my poems, “Scent in the Air.” And my dear friend and sister-in-law Catherine sang praises for my book of poems, Charles Sorley’s Ghost to me over the phone, and my new fiction project is starting to gel and morph into an exciting novel-sized book-to-be that may be the best thing yet. Catherine commented that she admired that I do not give up, and I realized, at nearly 65 years of age, with notes and plans and poems and stories to tell, I can’t give up: I’m only getting started. It doesn’t get better than that. Thank you Frank, Claire Marie, Xander, Catherine, the editor of Oddball, and of course Diane, and everyone in my life, for all the memories and all the encouragement, and for giving me happy things to write about from time to time.

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