Thursday, August 16, 2012

Summer Houses

The Sunset over Cape Cod Bay, September, 2011

Although the summer has rocketed by, there are still over two more weeks until Labor Day, summer’s official end.

If you have the time, this is a marvelous time of the year to take a vacation in the country before fall and winter return. A “vacation” can be anything from a day trip to an entire week at a cottage on the water.

Just a week ago, our friends Aosta and Seth invited us to a summer house party on Otsego Lake. Although the drive was less than two hours, it was if we had entered another world.

The view to the south of Otsego Lake

The house they had rented had a lakeside deck and it was possible to look all the way up and down the Lake. Much of Otsego Lake’s shores are wooded. If you squint just right, it’s possible to imagine that James Fenimore Cooper’s Deerslayer would come out of the woods at any moment.

After considering this historical fantasy, we were back in a congenial present. There was a large dinner table, crowded with food, lots of genuinely friendly and congenial people and the Lake was a delight to swim in.

Speaking of delightful swimming: when pools and lakes are too warm by the summer heat, swimming at a bay or ocean beach can be refreshing. Saltwater swimming can be the gift that keeps giving, even into late September. The water can be warm as the leaves are changing.

While out in the country, keep an eye out for fresh produce. In some communities, the farm stand is as busy as a supermarket. But there are also places where a farmer or gardener puts out a few ears of corn or tomatoes on a table by their driveway.

With the nationwide drought, the number and variety of vegetables may be less than last year. So, that makes any produce you do find all that more appreciated.

In July, lightning bugs ruled the night sky. They are now gone from our backyard. However, the night is still alive with a chorus of unseen insects that hum, buzz, whir and make other noises that might arise from a piece of music composed by Philip Glass.

I hope you have a great time between now and Labor Day. If you have any stories from present or past summer vacations, feel free to share them as comments at the end of this blog post!

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