Wednesday, January 11, 2012
Today was my first visit to the lake this year. By now you know about my weekly walks around the lake with my friend Jo. I've shared many pictures with you. For Jo and me the lake has become a synonym for a good time together where we share with each other what is really important to us, when we talk about our dreams and fears, about motherhood and our children (our daughters have been going to the same schools since 5th grade - that's how we met). It's also the time when we can vent, be it about our husbands, our kids' school or politics (not necessarily in that order) and simply know that the other exactly gets what we're trying to say.
The lake is also the place where we share our mutual love for nature. It was during a walk with Jo when we discovered the nest of the Great Horned Owls. She is a real expert in everything nature, and thanks to her I can name so many birds and native plants now. We crawl through some brush, hoping to see a bittern (we did). We can stand forever and watch the Great Blue Heron, egrets and Green and Black Crowned Night Herons. I can now recognize some birds by their sounds, like the kingfisher (not difficult) and, of course, the red shouldered hawk - a pair of them circles over our house almost every day.
But I also love to walk around the lake on my own. Very early in the morning is my preferred time, when I'm almost alone there except for a few other photographers and bird watchers. At that time - especially now in winter - the sun is not even over the hill and there are interesting big shadows on the lake. Thursday before Christmas I even saw six otters playing in the water. I had heard about them, but never seem them until that day. There's also a bobcat roaming around the lake, but so far I haven't seen it. Sometimes I see deer, and one morning I discovered a muskrat near the shore. In the summer there are snakes, mainly gopher and garter snakes, sometimes a California king snake, but they are very shy. And, of course, a lot of birds.
Walking around the lake alone always gives me a good opportunity to contemplate things that are important to me. Like my Etsy shop. This is the time when I think of new inventory and ponder about a new file system, so that it doesn't get too chaotic when tax time comes along. I think about blogposts I want to write either here or on Vision and Verb. And sometimes I simply dream - of places I want to travel to, goals I want to achieve. In my mind I'm designing my garden in a different way. I try to figure out how to save more water. And how to be more budget savvy.
It's a good place for me, the lake. A place to relax and refresh. And truly a place of my heart.
Do you have a place like this? Would you like to share?