Daily Archives: July 15, 2011

The Bright Side of Life

Superior sunsetJuly 13: If one of the goals of parenting is to provide a continuation of the past, then watching Cole watch Monty Python in the bunk bed of a trailer on Lake Superior, I feel like I’ve succeeded. We’re in the same spot that I spent many summers of my life, looking through the same break in the trees out on the sunset. My parents gifted me these pastoral vacations, and now I pass the tradition on.

I also have renewed respect for the difficulties of trailer life that my folks managed. I’m engaged in a never-ending battle against sand in the beds and on the floor. I struggle to conserve our limited water resources and not fill the septic tank — how do you control that?!

Cole has inherited my blissful unawareness. Eager to have no break in the fishing, swimming, kayaking, fireworks, BB gun shooting, etc., he thinks Bud and I are party poopers for needing to go to town for supplies. I well remember that feeling of freedom, of hazardless beach and friendly woods, of days that didn’t begin to end until the sun set at 9:30.

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Snow in July

BeartoothJuly 11, 2011:    The rivers were rushing in Yellowstone too, the falls magnificent roaring cascades. I loved this park as a child, and haven’t been back in more than 20 years. Its scale and diversity loom even vaster than I remember: canyons, lakes, rivers, mountains, hot springs, geysers, volcanic rocks, vast green valleys, pine forests — the park truly has it all. And the animals: In our too short 24 hours there, we saw grizzlies, a black bear, scores of buffalo, elk wandering through Mammoth Hot Springs resort, a baby and mama deer, and a healthy coyote trotting across a field of yellow flowers. We were sobered and made cautious by the news that a man from Torrance had been mauled by a grizzly just a few miles from where we were staying. But we loved our sweet Western cabin at Canyon Lodge. I wish we could have stayed longer. Continue reading

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