I’ve watched the sun set behind silhouetted mountains on wavy blue lakes so many times, and yet, every time, I sit in awe.
My Nikon has captured…and not captured….so many suns dropping, more quickly than you expect once it gets moving. “Not captured” because truly, there is nothing like the real experience. No matter how good our technology is now a-days – even cell phones – nothing can capture the real.
The moment of being there.
For nineteen years, we’ve been taking our kids to the lakes of Maine, since our sons were babies.
As I sit now on the dock, glued to the orange fire ball lighting the undulating water, I’m 20 years older. My sons are 20 years older.
My older son kayaks a few hundred yards away with a sweet young woman. I see him reach his hand over toward hers. They coast, also taking in the setting sun. Slow. Everything is moving a little slower this time of day.
My younger son is in the lake house with three of his friends – large men, now – no longer the little boys we rowed in canoes and caught fish off the dock with. They’re laughing heartily and playing video games. Some things don’t change no matter where you go.
I pull my wool sweater a little tighter across my chest as the wind sweeps up in front of me. My hair, tucked up in a ratty bun, blows in wisps. My feet are bare and tanned so brown this summer. My toes, pedicured in Fearless and tucked into high heels back home, are naked of color here. They look so soft and gentle.
All of me, here at the lake, is soft and gentle.
I remember the boys when they were toddlers at the lake – swimming six hours of each day, catching fire flies, sitting mesmerized around camp fires until bed time.
They were free at camp. They were outside, breathing fresh air, and witnessing all types of wild weather even in summer in Maine.
There were thunder storms and wood fires in massive stone fireplaces. There were blueberry pancakes and fresh corn on the cob bought at the farmers market. There was the smell of pine. Indian paintbrushes, ferns, horse shoes and Scrabble.
Twenty years flood back to me as moments of summer.
Remembering our get-aways, watching my sons now, fills me with warmth and gratitude.
I take this summer moment and bank it away for later….just like I’ve done over our life together. I always want to sneak back to this very moment, never forgetting and always appreciating.