Tuesday, August 4, 2009

The Mini-vacation

It's 83 degrees out with brilliant sunshine. The moon will be full tomorrow evening and rise over the lake. There's the feel of a thunderstorm or windstorm in the air. I went grocery shopping happily this afternoon. When I finish blogging, I'll go out and mow.

I took a mini-vacation yesterday and this morning. Last evening I had a lengthy listing appointment followed by a lengthy conference call. I took the latter at the lake, watching the moon rise and enjoying the darkness. Bob had kept the dogs in at the house in Elbridge with him, so I was free. I spent the evening reading one of my favorite authors, Dick Francis, eating ice cream and then falling asleep with the wind from the lake sweeping up to the camp.

In the morning I got up late - no living alarm clock Koko to get me up at dawn - and went kayaking. I took off well, proud that I could lift the kayak off the dock and get in it without tipping it. I went up the lake towards "Footprints" and the Narrows, hoping to make it into the bay. As I got away from the point the wind grabbed me. I could have surfed to the north end, but getting home would have been dicey. I hadn't had my coffee yet.

I stayed close to the shoreline and easily paddled home, actually going beyond the camp into our cove where I'd spotted a turtle over the weekend. What a difference the cove makes, especially when the wind is from the south! I docked, threw the paddle up onto the seawall, and shoved the kayak onto the dock then tied it on. The breeze had that chaotic feel of a late afternoon storm brewing.

I made breakfast - over easy egg with ham slices, a small OJ, peaches over cottage cheese and the necessary coffee - and ate it out on the deck. The poplar at the seawall filtered the sun, so I had the advantage of breezes without the heat. I made some phone calls - yes, we can get into the two family we've been trying to see for a week; no, relocation doesn't have the answers yet; yes, it looks like the owner will be amenable to some kind of radon mitigation; no, the offer we expected may take until the end of the week - and drank my second cup of coffee. I did the dishes languidly, then read some more. The Dick Francis was an old one, and a good one, that I had found at the Skaneateles Library sale a month earlier.

After a while it got too hot and I decided to take a swim. This is momentous, and rare. I am not a proficient swimmer. I do the breast stroke and push through the water and that's about it. Several of my neighbors swim for a long time every morning and/or evening. Not me. But today I enjoyed my brief lap around the neighbor's raft. Cool, refreshing, and then I could sit in the sun (with a hat on, of course).

I finished the book, checked e-mail and made a few more calls, and then packed up for home. Boo is on steroids and drinks a ton and needs to go out (handy euphemism) a lot more than usual. He needed me to be home by 1:00.

I was. Rested, relaxed, ready to do the work of keeping up two houses while working full time (and more). No "away" vacation, but one valued as much as two weeks in the Bahamas. Well, maybe.

The point is that that's what camp does, it allows you to go away while staying here, if that makes any sense. It's time used efficiently and well. As a young mother I took summers off from teaching, and now I realize how precious those years were. I never had any money to go away, just the camp I'd inherited. None of the other mothers did either, but none of our kids minded.

So now when I look at waterfront I see it differently, as a way for families to create homes that are special places for memories and offer more opportunity for making daily living a vacation. And a great getaway for hard-working Realtors, too!