Trip Start Oct 16, 2007
71Trip End Dec 16, 2007
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It was the best of times and the worst of times - hasn't that been used before? Life on the lake has been bittersweet.
After a successful launch of the martin house - they were moving in before I could raise it - and an equally successful inhabitation of the two wood duck boxes, I thought we were off to a good start. Soon the Coopers Hawk was trying to raid the martin house and the darned chipmunks were climbing up into the robin's nest regularly leaving beautiful aqua blue egg shells scattered on the ground. It was quite a surprise watching those little buggers scale the brick walls. Although the robin finally had a successful hatch it left the nest prematurely and has been hiding around the yard
The neighbors saw the baby wood ducks paratroop from the box into the lake down to mother wood duck - all 18 successfully. Even better since Marilynn and Karen had sneaked a peak the week before and encountered a stubborn duck who refused to budge as 9 eggs went rolling out of the box into the lake. Imagine two grown women with gloves and tongs picking up the eggs and then trying to place them successfully back around the immobile mother duck! Where is the camcorder for taking the worlds funniest video when you need it? It was a sight with Matthew running into the yard shouting for me and Marilynn limping after him a little more slowly - albeit better and better every day since her successful knee surgery. Our other neighbor said she heard the mother coaxing the babies to jump and just happened to look out her window to watch the fluffy yellow paratroopers leaping into the lake and then reappearing like tiny bobbers as they popped back onto the water's surface. My box unfortunately lost their mother half way through incubation and ended their lives as leathery shelled eggs. Like so many things in life - after a fantastic start a rather sad ending.
The weather has covered every option and gone from spectacular to pitiful but the rains have left some exquisite foliage
I have taken my last tour of the lake and we've gone for the last SBR with Jim's departure to China. New things abound and I will miss my daily kayak ride. We've also just viewed the most successful Fourth of July firework display ever. The fireworks were launched from a barge about 1000 feet from the shore of the house. The night was clear, the moon was full and the rest was magic. The neighbors were playing Strauss which was the perfect accompaniment for the spectacular display. As Eunice's brother Ron said, "we have to do this every year." What a night.
At the moment I'm winding down and putting things aside to pack but at the same time sending thoughts and prayers to all of my buddies who are utilizing too much health care this summer. I only wish I could be with you, and I promise to keep in touch. Hang in there. I think about you every day.