This hubby of mine. He's the very best. With the season coming to its 'official' close, a short time back, I mentioned that another summer had slipped by without a visit to the ocean. In other words, an incomplete summer, sigh. Especially if you grow up in Baltimore, you just have to go, "downey oshun, Hon!" But, the Atlantic is a far stretch from me these days.
Well, Michael surprised me by setting up a few days away. But, not just any place; he decided we'd go to the next closest body of big water in one day's drive. So, he made plans for us to go to Erie, PA and visit the great Erie Lake.
The whole way up to our adventure, I was wondering if it could even measure up to the Atlantic. I mean, I know they call it a Great Lake, but can a lake even come close to an ocean for majesty and the ability to awe? After all, it's only a lake.
We get there, the four of us, yes four because he further delighted me by making a reservation where Fiona and Rory were welcome, and set out to find the big water. A short drive later, we're parked for a stroll along the edge of the 'lake.'
Can I tell you? The warm wind was blowing white caps across the face, and while they weren't the waves I am used to, the spray off the storm jetties was pretty impressive!
The next day we set off for Presque Isle, which is a long sliver of land that is a state park. It's home to the numerous beaches everyone uses to visit with this Lake. This time of year, the season being over, it's returned to the gulls, wild life and the trees to enjoy. Very few people around meant that we could let Rory & Fiona have some freedom and enjoy the smells and the beach. It was their first time seeing water like this. Intrepid Fiona got in and splashed about, but Rory wasn't at all trusting enough to try. He preferred to investigate the shore line.
Unlike the Atlantic Ocean beaches, where shells abound, this is rock and drift wood and really interesting bits of flotsam that washes up and sits undisturbed. The locals look for sea glass along the edge. Lake Erie is the final resting place of more ship wrecks than all of the Great Lakes, and the sea glass is the remains of the hopes of those on board. Odd, when you consider that you're excited to find a bit of history which marks the watery end of Human Beings.
Occasionally, you'll come across a fish out of water. Poor thing. No reason to throw it back, it's already turned an odd color. Trust me, this was the cutest of the dead fish that made me go, "Eww!" While the same dead thing made Rory go, "Ohhh!" as he investigated them too closely making Michael and me shout simultaneously, "Leave it!!!"
We all sat and watched the lake flat and placid, seeming a sheet of glass. We wondered how vast this body of water is even though it is one of the smallest of those Great Lakes. It fills the horizon and my eyes and mind couldn't tell the difference between this wet horizon and the one I've fondly watched along the Atlantic. Except, this water is not salty like the sea and it was so clear.
Our pack enjoyed some bonding time, just the four of us. Closing our eyes, relaxing. Sniffing the air. Being quiet and hearing the gathered gulls call and challenge each other on the storm breaks.
And at the end of our day, the sun set over the water, which is something beautiful you can't see over the Atlantic Ocean where the sun starts each day.
I'm reminded that this world is full of opportunities to learn new things of beauty and new ways of seeing them. And, while they may not compare with your old haunts, your old stomping grounds, you can still be impressed when you encounter them. You can learn to love something new and look forward to your next encounter with it.
You can expand your sense of wonder as you exclaim, "Damn!," the first time you're awed by the glimpse of a new place and way. It is Erie and beautiful. Thank you Michael, for making it possible to slip away with you- my love, and our Scotties. It was exactly what my spirit needed and even better than I hoped! Like my life, you made my summer complete.
Namaste' Till Next Time,
20 hours ago