Here’s to a Happy Labor Day weekend and a Happy Saturday morning to everyone from here in the North Woods. It was reported this week that the nearby Wharncliffe Valley experienced their first hard frost since last spring. Finally; the Dr. Coffee beeped, coffee is ready, one moment please.

As storytellers Garrison Keillor and the late Stuart MacLean would be want to say; “it was a quiet week on Lake…”. Yes it was a quiet week on the lake. All us seasonal folk have become a slight bit more introspective. No one wants to be the first to openly talk about that which is on all our minds – the final closing of the cabin.

Oh sure, they’ll talk in circles; “how late you’re staying this year?” But, so far, no one has let slip their plans and strategy for heading out. “Oh, fairly soon now I guess, first though it’s got to be THE color.”

Marcia and I are staying for THE color, and, ever so slightly, the leaves have begun to turn.

This week we’ve seen and heard of many untold events, especially in and around Houston of kindness and goodness. More on that in a moment, but first:

”niceness is a living force, a Tao, a way of being—a constant, energetic striving to repay the unearned good fortune of our existence by treating all those around us with respect.” ~ Jeet Heer (from, The Walrus December 12,2010)

The Sale — Last weekend it was a community sale held at the community haul as a community benefit. And ‘haul’ Marcia did. A stunning set of tables (three) now forming the core of our screened in porch. Not only that,, but we know the maker of these tables. Mr. Montpetit crafted them some twenty years ago. Eat your hearts out.

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Poly – Marcia spent large chunks of her days hunched over. Finally it was a perfect time to sand and Polyurethane the new knotty pine living room floor. Not a simple process. The sanding, even with wiping and vacuuming, caused a massive amount of dust – it was the next day before all of it had settled. That meant, we were only to walk on it in stocking feet.
Once the first of three coats started to get laid it had to be done in a manner that allowed for the large Futon to be moved around and a path to the bedroom kept open. All the other stuff was crowding the kitchen and dining area.

But, this very morning, all is done, and it looks great! By noon the chairs, coffee table and chest will be back in place. Even the red round rug will be back where it belongs. The books and audio stuff is already in order. Marcia can finally straighten up. Nice going Marcia!

Water – What is it with rain storms this year? 50-inches during a single storm event? The chaos in people’s lives is beyond belief. The saving grace in all of this is watching how people have come together, how giving seems to have become the norm, how reaching out sees no end. Plus, and this is something for this old curmudgeon, the level of efficiency displayed by the various government entities is as good as I’ve ever seen.

I loved reading reports of people helping people. How businesses opened their doors to aid. And, most importantly, I am so proud of our Kirstin and her mother in law, Donna, volunteering with the Red Cross, and aiding for many hours until they were numb and dead tired. Thank you ladies!

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But, the story of this rain business continues. Early in the week our neighbor, the Professor, pounded on our door – four in the afternoon and a little too loud to be announcing Happy Hour. “We’re heading out”, he breathed. “Windsor had a rainstorm and our basement has flooded”. Turns out that it was the worst such storm in Windsor’s history (or so says the Mayor who the professor feels is inept). They were back mid-day Thursday; 7 ½ hours driving each way with a total of four border crossings.

We too had rain, but I probably should not get into that since I didn’t even have to bail the little Sea Nymph.

Animal Planet – The Bear hunt is well underway. Mike a local guide brought in five.

Marlene and Donn came over to have me join them on an ATV run to a place where Snowshoe Creek runs into the Mississagi – a lively 2-hour event. I had problems with my little Honda and it wouldn’t get out of first gear (now fixed). Though it did cause me to skip the ride .

One afternoon the wind and rain was having the little bird feeder swing about wildly. Soon a Goldfinch landed on it, sat on the side away from the wind, tucked itself tight to the little feeder, and happily proceeded to devour as many sunflower seeds as it could. Brilliant strategy.
And yes, the Hummingbirds haven’t left yet; I expect that to happen shortly. In the meantime we’re still keeping the feeders up.

Finis – This week it was wishing a Happy Birthday to Vaioleti and to George.

Pieter is overseas visiting with our cousins, I am jealous. Have a great time guy.

If you watched the opening You Tube you might have spotted Derek in the middle of the Tuba section. School has only been open a couple of weeks and he is a freshman, but here he is putting on a spectacular performance. Well done Derek!

The older grandkids in the ‘Nati, Dinah and Marin, took time to hear Senator Sanders speak at Marin’s school. I disagree with Sander’s vision, love his dedication, but am proud they spent time learning how a Democracy works.

Make it a great week everyone.

Cheers.

Dirk

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