How the sky turns to fire against a telephone wire, Burns the last of the day down*
Last Labor Day Weekend, Husband and I drove J~ up to his cottage in northern Michigan.
I went back through my archives to see if I had blogged about it, and, to my frustration, I had not.
As I recall, we left on Thursday afternoon. We drove him up north that evening because my aunt could not leave until Friday afternoon, and J~ wanted to have an extra day at the cottage.
Along the way we stopped at Fuddrucker's for dinner.
J~ loves Fuddrucker's, he always has, and there are none anywhere near our city.
We all ordered cheeseburgers and milk shakes, and they were delicious and decadent. J~ made the kids laugh, he was always good at making my kids laugh.
We didn't arrive at J~'s cottage until late, but the next morning, we packed a cooler with drinks and Husband helped J~ get the cover off the boat.
We set off in the boat, gliding across the crystal blue water. J~ was driving the boat and we had a perfect ride.
We didn't have our camera with us.
At the time it seemed like an unfortunate thing to have forgotten, but now?
At this moment? I cannot believe we forgot our camera. It seems like a crime...
How could I not have known that we were running out of good days? How could I not have known that that was the last day I would ride around the lake with J~? How could I have left the camera at home and not captured any photos of that day?
When I was a very little girl, on a different lake, in a different boat, J~ would let me pretend to drive the boat...or he and I my grandfather would walk down to the dock and sit in the boat, dangling fishing poles over the edge.
J~ was happiest on the water, or near it. As I have mentioned repeatedly, he is a joyful person, and was capable of finding joy in all kinds of places.
But on the water, near the water...at the beach or at the lake. Those were his places. I am grateful, that in the last few months he was able to return both the beach and the lake.
He will not see his places again.
Ten days ago they told us he had two days left.
I guess they didn't tell him.
Yesterday he awoke from his deep sleep and announced that a friend, long dead, was coming to pick him up and take him to a movie.
I have no doubt that is true.
The not knowing when that last moment will find us...it's killing me a little bit. Almost as much as the knowledge that I left my camera behind on that beautiful end-of-summer day.
Patty Griffin, Useless Desires