Lucky, aren’t we? We have super friends who like us enough to take us with them on vacation. Nope, not our usual Moosehead adventures, but a new adventure at the camp in the Adirondacks that belongs to the family of our friends.
One morning I got up extra early and hopped in a kayak. The sunrise pictures are from that quiet moment alone, just me and the loons (one of which you can see in the lower right of the photo above), and then a deer at the water’s edge. I like kayaking alone because I don’t like to be in a hurry to get anywhere and I like having plenty of time to look around and listen, paddle a little, then float, etc.
Picture lots of cabins with a central main house for game-playing and a porch for eating and hanging out on the porch swings; another building with the kitchen (two ovens!) in it as well as pingpong and laundry and nearby a funny little fridge room; an outdoor shower on the bluff; lots of porches and piney woods; a boat house with boats (all sorts) and lifejackets for every stage of life; a sandbox, horseshoes, clay tennis court. Some cabins have bathrooms and some don’t.
Ours didn’t. But we didn’t mind as we were delighted by our luck in being assigned to the Water Cabin: just a couple of feet from the water, the loons, the splashy fish, and the amazing sunrise reflections on the ceiling. And this bridge was in our backyard, right past the girls’ forest fort and onto a tiny rocky outcropping with one chair.
Some of my very favorite girls were there, so I brought “hair molish” (nail polish) along for doing toes. And a tiny knitted chicken who could “lay” little eggs (white beans). The chicken needed a nest in the forest of course, and a chair, and a bench for her collection of pine cones, and a bed for naps. And another bed for different naps. And a broom made out of a white pine frond.
Everyone was entered into the pingpong tournament and I played the first pingpong since I was at camp a very long time ago. I remembered that sometimes I shriek when I miss. (This could also be a good strategy for putting off my opponents.) And I wasn’t as bad as Sylvan expected! In fact my game was a good match, against a very excellent 10 year-old, in which I only lost by two points. I was challenged during Bananagrams when it was suggested that interjections like “aw” and “ugh” were not acceptable words, and was ultimately victorious when a Scrabble dictionary was consulted.
There was plenty of space for everyone to have their needs met, from raucous swimming on the dock to hours of waterskiing and tubing (thanks to the dads who drove the boat), to shady reading spots and board games, cooking for a crowd or fending for oneself in the kitchen. It was such a generous, easy and inclusive place to spend time; our hosts embraced us in the natural flow of the days. Truly, it was OK to do whatever you felt like.
One morning was pancake breakfast over the fire pit, by two of our hosts. Extra delicious with the smoky fire! The wind was picking up as the weather was shifting, which made it a little exciting to pour (aim?) the pancake batter.
On the last day we collected balsam so we could sew pillows with the girls. My lucky friend had some wonderful fabric samples with her and it was pretty hard to choose. Clothesline? Froggies with umbrellas? Tiny Japanese bunnies? Owls?! The weather was wild and windy, so an inside project was perfect.
And they smell amazing. So grateful to vacate the premises and enjoy some time away with some wonderful folks.
OK, enough with the adorable toenails and tiny fragrant pillows, let’s talk about the patriotism of the roof above. We ended up being forced (by a detour and the fact that we are maybe the only people left without a GPS or smart phone) to go through Lewiston-Auburn on our way out of Maine, a route that had nothing to recommend it, was stressful and mildly interminable. But this roof made it all worth it.