"It was imprudent of us, in the first place, to become authors. We could have become something regular, but we managed not to.
We were lucky, but we were also determined." Roy Blount Jr

"I don’t change the facts to enhance the drama. I think of it the other way round, the drama has got to fit the facts,
and it’s your job as a writer to find the shape in real life."
Hilary Mantel

Wednesday, May 30, 2012


Now that Memorial Day weekend is past, the dogs and I have the lake to ourselves again.

Or so we thought, until we went down to the dock.

My pet fish Walter is back. I hadn't got worms for him yet, so I threw him a piece of whole wheat tortilla. He's about to eat it in this photo.

I also tossed him some tiny scraps of steak tips left over from Monday's lunch, when a film crew came to the cottage to film the Chap and me for a documentary on church stewardship. But I think Walter would prefer worms to steak, so I'll be heading to the corner store's bait section very soon.

The lake is smooth as glass today, and clear as crystal. The heavy downpour last night removed the pollen that had marred the water's surface.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Sunday, May 20, 2012

At Rest

The process of finding your next bishop, in the Episcopal Church, is not a quick or simple one. I accepted the appointment as vice chair of the Search & Nomination committee sometime in January 2011. After members of our committee and an Election & Nomination committee were elected and appointed, we first gathered for a retreat in April--exactly 11 months ago. We announced the 3 nominees on March 15th of this year.

I won't go through all the stages of surveying, talking, listening, profiling, filming, writing, travelling, praying, and wondering that led us to yesterday's election. I will say it has been a joyous, intense, emotionally powerful, and thoroughly spiritual process. If you care to know more, you can do an internet news search for "bishop" and "New Hampshire."

Yesterday was filled with special moments, for me and for our diocese. The ones I most treasure:

--Seeing friends from every corner of our diocese among the more than two hundred fifty delegates and observers and staffers who were present.

--During our service of Holy Communion, which wrapped around the election, reading the Prayers of the People from the lectern. My own congregation happened, by sheer coincidence, to come up in our Diocesan Cycle of Prayer, and was named.

--Standing before the electors with the chair of our Search committee (who happens to be former rector of our parish) and I officially and formally placed the 3 priests' names in nomination.

--Placing my ballot in the historic wooden ballot box.

--Singing hymns while ballot counting took place in a secret location.

--Learning that we had elected our future Tenth Bishop on the first and only ballot, then escatictally singing the Doxology when he rang in via mobile phone.

--Hearing his brief address to the convention

--Taking communion with my husband and my many happy friends from all over New Hampshire.

To see the full gallery of images from our big day, visit DFDPhotography, website of the person responsible for the photo posted above.

To some extent I will be involved in upcoming phases of transition. But for now I'm happy to have a restful period of knowing that the lengthy and involving task is completed. As you might expect, I have come to the cottage on the Big Lake to revel in my new sense of leisure. And as you also might expect, I come with materials for a book to be written, and more than a few books to be read.

And dogs.

It's the first day for the Big White Boat to cruise up and down our Bay. Glad I was here to see its maiden voyage!

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Compare & Contrast



On Sunday the dogs and I took up residence at the cottage--I had a few days without meetings. The photos demonstrate the variability of the weather. I've done lots of pleasure reading, worked on some writing projects, walked the girls a lot.

Yesterday's rains filled the brook, now rushing noisily into the Big Lake. Last night after I went to bed, I heard a loon calling in the bay. I hope to catch a glimpse of him soon. The phoebes are nesting in a new nest in their old location high under the eave of the screened porch. They must've decided last year's site on an unused light fixture by the path to the parking area was too public and too much foot traffic. I left the nest in case they wanted to use it again. Now they've moved on, I think I'll leave it anyway.

Friday, May 04, 2012

Bird Men

Well, factually, male birds. This morning the male evening grosbeak migrated to our bird feeder. Last year and in 2010 he returned on May 5, so he's a day early this year.

It was Meet & Greet week in our diocese, and the nominees for our next bishop were visiting, meeting people day and night, dining and praying and taking part in all manner of activity. Every time I headed north, south, east or west from the Lodge, I passed a neighbour's stubble field where a turkey flock likes to hang out. Yesterday I spotted about two dozen birds, including a fully feathered turkey cock. No sign of them this morning, when I headed to Concord to meet a friend for lunch and do some shopping for the lake cottage (and Mother's Day!) On the way home, I drove slowly by the field and saw the cock with two hens, obviously trying to impress them with his bulk and his plumage. I stopped and hopped out of the car with my camera. The smaller, skinnier birds darted for the underbrush. Mr. Big remained long enough for me to take several photos, then sauntered off after his women.

I wanted to warn him that it's unwise to make oneself so very conspicuous on the day turkey hunting season opens!