Do you roll over and play dead when you’re supposed to pack the car for the annual fourteen-hour trip to the lake? Not if you’re a he-man. Paul has been preparing for a week. Excellent Leinenkugel packing boxes, which open from the center out, are stacked in the living room filled with such things as dry foods and tennis balls. As we head into the second week before our trip, the stack of things grows. Now we have suitcases full of books and important papers. We add golf equipment, tennis rackets. The last things we put in the living room are computers and clothes.
Paul’s a packing magician. He lugs this huge pile of stuff out to the car, then places everything just so, like the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, until it all fits in. He does not want my help with any of this; I would interfere with the plan he’s got going in his head. So I content myself with making little bags of “last minute items” I can stuff into a hole here and there at the end. Finally, Paul asks, “Will you help with the kayaks?” Together we lift them up onto rollers and push them into their cradles. He attaches the bike rack and puts the bikes on.
We’re off to Wisconsin! To the cabin. To the lake. To stillness. To quiet. To trees and birds. To the simple life. A place to think and write. A place to read. A place to play games. A place to cavort in nature.
Now we’re here. We’re dealing with critters that have taken refuge in the cabin, and ants, lots and lots of ants. The lake is very low because there hasn’t been enough snow and rain. I waded quite a ways out yesterday before I could push off for my first kayak ride.
I saw the female loon I wrote about last year nesting on the sandy shore of a little island (“Communicating Effervescence”). Again her head was weighed down with the work of pregnant waiting in the same position in the same spot.