I recently purchased a kayak – nothing fancy, just a hard plastic one that I can take out on the lake.  I don’t have to worry about beaching it or scratching the hull, but it allows me to explore and enjoy the lake and the shoreline at an up-close and leisurely pace.

I’ve enjoyed watching deer and small fawns along the bank of the lake, turtles that are quickly diving into the weeds, fish that are swimming in the clear and warm summer water, eagles overhead that swoop down into the lake and rise again with a fish in their talons, and loons that cruise the lake then disappear as they dive for their meals.  I’ve been mesmerized by the still lake surface in the early morning when the water is like a sheet of glass reflecting the clouds overhead, the whitecaps that ripple across the lake when the wind comes rushing through the channel, and the quietness of evening as the sun descends behind the trees to the west while the moon rises in the east.

I will never grow tired of nature and all that it offers up to us, no matter the season.

Alex 27044_StaatsOne of the very hardest things to do is to say goodbye to a pet, especially one that’s been a part of your life for over 17 years.  This past week I had to do that with my cat Alex.  We have been through a lot together over the years and he was always there to welcome me with a nudge and a purr.  At times he could be quite shy, especially around people he wasn’t familiar with.  But once he accepted you he was a great friend who loved to be close to you.  He was also my most serious-looking cat, although there was a great glimmer of excitement whenever the catnip came out for a treat.  He wasn’t one that liked to pose for photos, so I always felt fortunate when I could get an image that seemed to capture his personality.  His friendship and his loving nature we be missed…. Thanks, Alex.