The last day is depressing. Now I know it’s just a few short hours until I’m back in a cramped car with Micah just driving and driving all the way back to Smellville.
Today I had a bunch of breakfast: 3 Pop-Tarts and a few strips of bacon. Then I lounged around for a few. It’ll be another year before I have this much family with me for this long, so I made conversation while it lasted. Family being together. It’s always good.
Instead of Micah, I went with Mom and Dad to fish today. I figured we’d go to “Chuck’s Cove”–I’ll call it that for now–but we went to Dad’s. It was a different cove than what I thought Dad’s cove was–Dad didn’t even know he had a cove, but apparently this one we were in now was his. At least that’s what Mom said. On Dad’s very first cast he got a fish, a real kicker of a pike named Dirk. We figured it must be a hot spot. So we trolled around. Nothing happened. That lasted about fifteen minutes. Then Dad caught three more pike. Mom caught one too, and I finally got another fish, even though it was a walleye. A little later we drove back in. The water was really choppy and it got to hurting your butt from bouncing it against the seat. But it was also tremendously beautiful. The air was clear, the sun was bright, and the wind was cool. We were in an especially scenic section of the lake, with granite and forest intermingling on the hilly bank. Boy, do I love this place.
An hour or so after we got back we decided not to go out to the Falls again today. Going all the way up there in this extra-choppy water would leave you with no butt. So I have no pictures of it until next year.
Today Ray Henschell, the guy who sold shirts here last year, was here. He had a broader selection of shirts and stuff this year, but none of them had pictures of the lake on them. I’m glad I bought mine last year. Still, I liked the hat I saw there and, even though it was a ridiculous $25, I still bought it. After all, where else am I going to get one? A lot of other people from our camp bought stuff too. Ray Henschell went home pretty rich.
Earlier today I had a nice talk with Nick, Bill’s dad, about what he used to do out here. He was a trapper, back in the ’40s. He says it really toughened him up, and he meant way up. When he went into the –Air Force, was it?–he could lift double what everyone else could. After he got out of the Air Force he opened up a restaurant called Nick’s, and then when Crowduck “came along”, he bought it. I also talked about maps, and he went to get me a Whiteshell map from behind the counter, but he couldn’t find any. Maybe there’ll be some at the Visitor’s Center or whatever. Hope so.
I went swimming today. There were already three kids–relatives of Bill’s?–there, playing on a big yellow thing that you could inflate and then stand on in the water. Their names were Nathan, Sid, and “Jube”, but I don’t think Micah heard that last one right before he told me. Well, Micah was sitting, on top of that yellow thing, and he hadn’t gotten all the way underwater yet. So one of the kids and I decided to push him off. He put up a lot of struggle, but we got him. Then he got all sulky and got out of the lake. He kicked into the lake the stuff I’d taken off before I got in. Oh well.
We had a huge dinner tonight, with all the great stuff from the rest of the week. I had onion rings, waffle fries, fish, muffins, and salad. It was the best meal I’ll have for a year.
I kept wanting to do something really fun and different to finish off the week, but it was too late to do anything on the boats–they had to be back by 2000–and I couldn’t think of anything to do without them. So with a little melancholy I sat down and played Scrabble with Mom and Aunt Irene. I didn’t win. I have to do something great tomorrow morning. Maybe I’ll go jump in the lake off the dock or something. Definitely I’ll take a few more pictures.
There’s some lightning playing south of us. A cool breeze is sweeping in through the screens out here on the porch. I’m sitting here listening to Crowduck and I wish it weren’t over. I wish I could stay here and fish and hike and listen to the wind forever. But I can’t.