In a Fog

Manitoulin Creeping out of the Fog

I awoke in a fog this morning, literally. Overnight, both Canada and Round Island had disappeared and the lake boats that ply the shipping channel in-between them were tooting their fog horns. The forecast called for the fog to last most of the day, but by late morning the island reappeared and then so did Canada, but looking out across the lake the fog persisted. By this time a new squadron of down bound freighters were tooting at each other. Actually, this being the weekend, they were probably trying to ward off pleasure craft lost in their own fog and could see each other plainly on radar. The Manitoulin was the first to appear and with its large white superstructure, it made a dramatic appearance, floating ghostly white above the fog bank, with its darker hull effectively hidden from view.

Eventually, the rest of the fog burned off and it became a rather nice beach day. Bubs and Harry came down to the beach, at least as far as Bill’s Adirondack chairs. Anne went for a dip and not a moment after she had been commended by the neighbors for bravely venturing out into the water, her mother admonished her for being out to far. I waded out to her rescue and we moved up the beach, into shore, around behind some pine trees and out of mother’s sight. We spent the better part of the afternoon visiting with Brigid, Chris, Lisa and her kids.

We are going to join them in a book club this summer, at least for one round. The book is “Perfect Match”, Jodi Picoult’s 2002 novel about pedophile priests, child sexual abuse and murder. You can’t forget about murder. Not my usual cup of tea, but I’m still game to try it. I ordered the book from Amazon, but up here my Prime membership’s free two-day delivery stretches into four. I ordered the paperback version and not the Kindle, because first it was cheaper and second, others who wouldn’t use Kindle might want to read the book too. Purchase of the paperback come with limited electronic access to the book. This is designed to tie you over until the delivery is made. I’m sure that the text is budgeted for two-day delivery, so it will likely run out before the book is delivered. What if it doesn’t? What does that say about my reading ability?  

American Dipper

American Dipper

The most unusual feature of this rather dull colored little bird is that it walks underwater, à la those old deep-sea divers with the big brass helmets, canvas body suit, weighted belt and lead shoes. It does have strange feet, so it might be able to grip the bottom, but I suspect that it has a way to regulate its buoyancy, so that it sinks to the bottom, but still has enough oxygen to hold its breath.

We (being Dave, Anne and I) drove to Ann Arbor. Dan, since he had been in Saint Louis little over 24 hours, wanted to stay a little longer and catch up with his friends. He’ll join us at the cabin later. It is hot here too and there is no AC at Chez Harry’s, but for a night we can make do. I have a fan, Dave has the basement and Anne is home. It’s all good. Harry and Jane fixed dinner and we all dined on the back deck. It was a lovely evening for dining out, sort of speak.

We listened to “Big Sky” by A. B. Guthrie Jr. The third in our trifecta of audio books with a Montana theme. This one is set in the 1830s and follows two boys who journey west from Kentucky. They both want to be mountain men and halfway through, both have managed to keep their hair. One disturbing aspect of the novel is its pervasive use of the N-word. Now, there is not an African-American character in the whole book (another disturbing feature), but I still wonder at the use of this now hateful word. The book was written fifty years ago and employs plenty of other colloquial words and phraseology, but I still stutter at each utterance of this word, even when it is spoken by a white speaker about themselves. Still, it is an interesting story that most closely traces our travels than any of the other audio books that we have listened to.

PS – It is now already much cooler than before.

When Pigs Fly

When Pigs Fly, Pork Chopper, Dale Lewis, Sioux Falls, SD

We picked Dave up at the airport last night, at nine o’clock. Old Lambert was a happening place at that hour. Terminal 2 was slammed. Traffic was so backed up that it impeded our progress to Terminal 1. We drove up to the departures deck and began waiting for Dave to appear. I picked the farthest spot, the one behind another car and a van to lay low in. Dave’s plane had arrived earlier than scheduled and was having difficulties at the gate. Will someone please move the damn jetway, please. All too soon a roving security guard appeared to shoo us away, because we were loitering in a TSA controlled area, don’t you know.

First, he spoke with the occupant of the van and then the car next to us and then he walked up to us. I lowered the window and he said, “I’m going to give you the speech…” To which he quickly went off script from. Conspiratorially, he explained that we were being monitored by closed-circuit surveillance cameras, so he had to put on a good show. He told us that he would be making another circuit of the concourse and then it would be another ten minutes before he got the radio call to tell us to move along, which should be more than enough time for our passenger to get here. We both thanked him vociferously for this indulgence and then I asked him what was the deal at Terminal 2?

He told us that six planes had just landed and 1,500 people were all trying to leave at the same time. It was then that the commotion at arrivals, directly below us made itself known. There was the chirping of sirens, honking of horns and a cop car’s PA blaring for people to move along. Taking notice of this the guard commented that it was a good thing that we were up here at departures, because it would have taken us 45 minutes to wade through the congestion below us. We thanked him again, he did his circuit as promised, but paid us no more heed and Dave arrived soon afterwards and we were off for home, lickety-split. 

Yellowstone

Tonto’s Dream, David Bradley, 2013

We left the Big Horn Mountains and headed to Cody, WY, as in Wild Bill Cody. There is a fantastic museum there dedicated to western themes. The western art there rivals that of the Amon Carter Museum in Fort Worth, in my humble opinion. I especially loved the modern Native American art, as typified by “Tonto’s Dream”, with its obvious node to Rousseau. I hope that you can read some of the details in the photo. We spent several lovely hours there, but then it was on to Yellowstone. The mountains here are all still snow covered and there is still dirty snow roadside near the campground. We hit a bear-jam into the park and Anne saw the grizzly, but I was hell bent for leather to get to our campsite that I did not stop. I am just that way. We scored a pretty cool one. It features a view of Lake Yellowstone and right next door herds elk and bison.