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HomeColumns, Opinions & Misc.Where has summer gone?

Where has summer gone?

Waking up from a well-deserved nap, I was thinking about how much I love summer! The warm breezes and the feel of the sun on my skin warmed me far better than a cup of hot cocoa in the winter.

A dip in the lake, Michigan water always sends a chill that enhances the Michigan swimming experience. Humans are quite an adaptive species and watching them enter a Michigan lake is quite an experience. A young child or young adult may use the quick shot method. They jump into the water, and if it’s cold, they surface, and with a smile and yell, it feels great.

An older adult may use a slower acclimation process. This involves dipping a toe or a foot in the water, complaining, of course, walking into the water, scooping up some of the brisk liquid, and splashing it onto their arms, back, and stomach. When their body is ready, there are no concerns about a cardiac event when they submerge, off they go into the deep, at least waist deep.

Boating is another favorite summer activity. I fell in love with boating as a child. When I was 12, my family rented a cottage on Pontiac Lake. The cabin owner had a small speed boat, and he let me drive it under full power. As we came around an island, a couple of old wooden dock posts were about 5 feet out of the water. Without flinching, I drove the boat right between the dock posts. It was a tight fit, but no problem, we made it through.

I looked over at the boat owner, who was clearly shaken. “Everything okay?” I asked. He nodded his head yes but could not speak. My first boat was a kayak before I bought my first car. Then a rowboat that I would spend a day on the lake rowing, a small motor came later. I graduated to a speed boat, a bowrider, and my first pontoon. After a few boating changes, I now have just a pontoon and kayaks. It fits my lifestyle better.

Looking across the room at the calendar on the wall, I realized that it was already a couple of weeks into August and that the summer was more than half over. I have yet to launch my kayaks this year, and summer is almost over. In a few weeks, the boats will all be winterized and put away to wait for the next summer season. The lakes will get too cold to swim in, and the leaves will fall as Autumn approaches. The latest I have gone for a swim in Michigan was October 14.

My daughter swam on January 1st one year when there was no ice. To qualify as a swimmer, she needed to swim out deep enough that she could not touch bottom; she did, and so did her “Once in a lifetime Dog, Chloe!” Then they both took a hot shower! We wrote it in our family bible. Quite an achievement!

“Remember, every day is a gift! Some are just a little more fun to open than others. – © Joel M. Vernier 08/11/2023 Author of: “The Guinea Pig In The Freezer.” joelmvernier@aol.com

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