"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

Monday, April 30, 2007

"A Three Hour Tour"

Feel free to sing the Gilligan's Island theme song. It was running in my head constantly from 10 a.m. till 1 p.m.

Had to get up very early and cover a lot of territory this morning, driving all the way from the Lodge to the top of the Big Lake. It was bucketing rain, tourist season is a distant mirage, and it was Monday. For the first time ever, I was the only car on Route 11 West--a solitary driver for many, many miles of my journey. "Summer people" would never believe this to be possible.

I was there at 9:15, and the passengers were already boarding.

Yes, it's the same big white boat that regularly passes by my lake cottage. This was the day of its annual "shakedown cruise"--the very first outing of the season. Certain dignitaries and invited guests go along for the ride--and as a legislator serving on one of the three policy committees that attends, I was there. Despite the downright threatening weather. We expected to see the Governor among us, but for whatever reason he didn't make it this year.

We departed from the home port.

The above mixed spellings always make me a bit mental. If you're spelling it it "centre," then shouldn't the second word also be spelt "harbour"? A little consistency, please!

After sampling the breakfast buffet, I headed to the upper decks.

A view of the wheelhouse.

A lovely mountain in the distance, mostly obscured by cloud.

At least it had stopped raining. The air was chilly. We'd been encouraged to wear warm clothes. Inside the boat, it was was downright toasty, so we could nip inside to warm up or grab a cup of coffee.

During our cruise we stopped at only one port.

Heading into The Broads, we found clearer skies.

Out there in the open area we tested the engines and did some reversing. I keep gazing at the bays extending from The Broads, wondering which was mine.

A lunch buffet was served at noontime.

Our wake, as we made for home port.

A couple of loons were at the town docks to welcome us. We arrived exactly at 1 p.m. I headed back down the lake, pausing at the scenic lookout to photograph our cottage and boathouse on the other side.

At the tip of our Bay, I headed up the east side to visit the cottage. I wanted to make sure it had come through the recent storms unscathed. It had, but there were a lot a sticks and branches on the ground--an extensive clean-up is in order!

The front yard.

Drove through spells of sunshine and occasional downpours all the way back to the Lodge. This last day of April was completely typical, every ten minutes the weather was changing. And changing again!

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