The rythym of the waves crashing the wake play music to my motions. Slowed by the sand bar, distinguishable by it’s emerald green color a few yards out, the water moves gently enough to provide a surface, yet lively enough to offer a challenge in my game of skipping stones.
There are two walks we can take at the cottage. We can head south, toward the outlet. That walk will take us past the beautiful new cape cod a few doors down, welcomed to the neighborhood but looking quite out of place between the A-frames and rustic lodges we are used to. We’ll also pass a washed up log. This log seems to stay year after year, resting on the beach, marking the halfway point between the cottage and the outlet. Or, we can head north, toward the lighthouse, toward the cliff. In the distance you’ll see S.S. Badger departing from port, smokestacks puffing in the sunset. The closer we get to our destination, the steeper the staircases, higher into the clouds the homes, and the thicker the grasses.
Today, we’ll head south. The sun sets behind us. Sinking into the sand, our toes warm with every step through the tide. I can only make the stone skip when you aren’t looking. Otherwise, it’s a waste of a good skipping stone; you know, the medium sized, flat along every surface, perfect stone that, when in the right hand, can skip into the horizon. I, on the other hand, will skip it 3 or 4 times if I’m lucky. Every once in awhile I’ll get a few mini-hops in at the end to constitute 5 to 7 hops. Still, you can’t watch… I’ll surely sink it straight into the wave if you are looking.
We walk in stride, heads down in search of more skipping stones. You are the king of skipping stones. Perfect form, perfect hops across the edge of the water. We talk about what makes us happy, about how relaxed we are, about moving “up north”. As the sun drops closer to the lake, I’m glad for long sleeves and the warm water. The sun takes the summer heat with it every night.
We turn for home when the sky turns dark. The last ones on the beach, the only sounds are that of the crashing waves and our shuffling toes in the sand. There are new stones washed ashore. New stories to be told. So we walk slow. Just you, me and our skipping stones.