ah but its a beautiful day to be back home.  june 24th, 2006.  the gang is all here and we are getting ready to have ourselves a good ole family celebration.  perfect day for it:  sun is coming up, the skies are blue, no rain insight so let the good times roll!
what a drive though…
9 hours! 
but we are here now and have our shoes off.
last night, it was clear and bright, the stars were out and it was fresh! 
had me a glass of island water and felt a whole lot better. 
my old buddy Jazzy got mixed up with the other kids and she’s in thick.
michelle is in the field, walking.
me:  well i am getting my gear squared away for some pictures.
my old buddy Morgan is with the teens and early twenties in the sleep camp.  i think they were sitting around a campfire by the lake all night but i’m not 100.
its a glorious day and its all ours.
august 14, 2006:  back in the sweet climes of the island summer.  been here two days now and its grand.  fresh at night and early in the mornings, moon is arriving late in the night, whippoorwill is still in the trees to the east and out there on the field there are two fawns and a doe, sand hill cranes and a frog…  what is he doing way out there in the middle of that dusty old dry field?  the folks have had the grain cut and there isn’t anything left but the straw to bale. 
the old oak tree is standing tall and so is the maple.  so i’ve taken some pics and hope to have them loaded here when i get back to the city. 
but that isn’t happening anytime soon.  instead i am enjoying this ultra peaceful place, one hour at a time.  and loving it.  but its late in august.  and it feels like autumn could soon pounce on us.  there is that feeling in the air, just before noon.  the hot weather is not in the forecast so who knows, i just might not make it to the sand dunes…  but.  we shall take it one hour at a time and see what develops.  the bottom line is the same though, its a beautiful island and the peaceful times are plentiful.  thank goodness we made it this far!
august 15, 2006:  the wind hasn’t calmed in two days!!!  its still roaring out of the west.  this being an island, you know there are some big waves washing ashore in places like Providence Bay, so that is where i am off to this afternoon.  if i can muster the girls, i will drag them along but if not, i can go it alone! 
last night i woke sometime after midnight and saw the bright light of the half moon lighting the forest and thought its beautiful.  above it was a clear sky filled with bright stars.  and the trees were all waving crazily in the wind and i thought it would be perfect to walk under those stars and in that beautiful moonlight…  with the raging winds.  ah but i didn’t!  the covers were close at hand and warm.  so i crawled back in and under them and drifted off in peace, to some dreamland far away…
august 16, 2006:  the wind and the waves at Providence Bay yesterday afternoon were a glorious sight and sound!  the wind was terrific and the clear waters were rolling in creating quite the awesome sound to go with the awesome landscape.  i posted the pics here today and i hope you like them.  the gals are all still in the bunks so its just me right now but i do believe i sold the lot of them on the shoreline experience.  today we are going to a place called the sand dunes, Carter’s Bay.  it too is a magical place full of magical experiences. 
took a drive through tehkummah yesterday morning and that was much needed…  ah but that landscape hasn’t changed much except to say folks are getting wise to its peace.  more homes can be spotted hidden in the treelines up on top of some of the low hills.  they have the right idea.  as for us, we are still at the ranch and all is very well.
i awoke again last night, in the middle of the night and the half moon light was blazing in lighting the room.  it was beautiful.  and very peaceful. 
there is no wind today.  so we might get ourselves soaked!
more photos to come.
chi miigwetch.
august 17, 2006:  ah but we are the lucky ones!!!  this island living is sweet and easy, peace is at hand.  its a wonderful experience.  and in the company of so many fine ladies!!!  indeed.  the living couldn’t be any better. 
we took in the giant Carter’s Bay and the water is just as it was last year, clean and clear and a bit on the frosty side.  refreshing!  so beautiful that we are going back there today.  its a huge beach and there are few people using it.  so you’re not fussing and that is part of the magic of this wonderful place.  perfect day for it too!  nice and sunny, blue skies and very warm.  perfect. 
august 20, 2006:  sunday morning at the ranch, extremely quiet!  the girls have all gathered up and taken off to the cottage for a jumbo sleep over.  so there aint no hustle and or bustle this morning.  its just me and the pooch, an 18 year old jack russell, and the cool winds blowing over the ranch lands. 
went to the dopey old providence bay fair last night to judge the manitoulin idol contest.  i was surprised!  they had some real and serious talent there.  girls mostly but vocalists for certain.  some of those gals, or most of them, were city gals here for the summer but none of that matters when they’re up on stage doing the act.  they were great.  and i for one was impressed.  how do you judge these young whippersnappers?  i sure couldn’t.  so i just gave them perfect marks and let the other 3 judges do the dirty work!  as far as i was concerned, they deserved those high grades. 
after the contest we hit the amusements and man!  the temperature dropped from a balmy 25 degrees to about 2!  i was standing out there in my shorts and t shirt and thought this aint like i remember it from the 70’s…
watched my old buddy jazzy riding the kiddy rides and she seem to enjoy those.  she fell asleep on the ride home and is up there now, in the bunk. 
so this is sunday…  we have until this coming friday to get the most of it.  i just hope this frosty spell goes by quickly and we can get back to the sweet climes and the beauty beaches. 
august 21, 2006:  what is weird about yesterday’s entry is i mentioned my dad’s old jack russell, Poke.  that old pooch was at least 18 years old, probably 19.  that is extremely ancient as you dog owners know.  this old pooch was so old his eye sight was mostly gone and he had a hard time getting up the steps but his hearing was good and so was his nose!  anyway.  everytime we come home and see the old pooch, at least i do, i wonder if that’s the last time i’m going to see him.  well as i was writing yesterday, i looked out the window and saw the old pooch hustling down the drive way.  i think that was his morning excercise.  anyway.  he was around the house all morning.  then my mom came in from church around noon and said you better come and see the dog.
it was lying in the drive way, dead.  game over.
i thought holy toledo i just saw that dog in the kitchen.
it must have gone outside for one last look around and that was it, that’s all she wrote.
so i went out to the field, out by the old maple tree, which i photographed last week, so you can see it in the latest ranchland photo album, dug a hole and laid the poor old pooch to reset.  wrapped him in the shirt off my back and filled the hole with cedar, placed him in and said see you later Poke.  and that was that.
after that business was over with i took a nice long drive through the country, around behind lake mindemoya, over the west bay indian reserve, down through sandfield and into tehkummah.  spent a couple of hours out there and when i came home the gang was all here and a big picnic dinner and bbq was in progress.
so that was most of yesterday.
today, we are off to a place called meldrum bay.  now that is a glorious beach and definitely worth a look.  and i shall be taking a bunch of photos as well.
i’m looking out the window…
and i’m not seeing that old pooch hustlin up the drive way.
so its kinda bluesy. 
august 22, 2006:  tuesday morning at the ranch and the sun is back with us, up bright and hot.  beautiful day in the making.  beautiful to share with some very beautiful company and companions.  aah but this is the life. 
started the day off with a drive around the lakeshore, stopping at the old government dock where i took my swimming lessons and failed miserably.  i think the instructor had something for me cause i never got past a certain level and i took 3 years trying to do it.  finally i said F this and swam out to that island you can see in the pictures i posted this morning.  so it turns out i never needed those dang swimming lessons in the first place.  what do you expect from some one who is fish clan…
the scene at the government dock sure has changed.  no one around this morning. 
took some pictures of "the weeds where the pike like to go…   "
and then of course my old swimming spot and fave spot from my late teens all the way through my 20’s.  spent many a beautiful afternoon on that very dock, rickety now but sure back in the day, and swam from there to parts unknown, in the lake and other places…
tee hee hee…
this morning its very quiet there too!  not much happening and most certainly no sign of the friends and shinanigans from days gone by. 
the lake is full of canada geese.  the fields are filled with them too.  plus deer and sandhill cranes.  and small song birds and doves.   beautiful.
right now i am waiting for the ladies to muster. 
they have been in the bunk now since 2 a.m.  i guess they need their beauty sleep cept i would say, looking at them at the beaches for the past several days, they are in no need of beauty sleep as they are already very beautiful ladies.  graceful and willowy, running down the sand beaches and gathering stones of interest on the rockier shores.
and they are musical.
tis a paradise we have over here on this island.
i for one am thanking my lucky stars!
august 24, 2006:  another beauty day in the works.  the sun is high and bright and man!  i sure wish we had these skies yesterday for our drive to meldrum bay.  ah well. 
the gals are off horse riding.  i’ve had my times with horses and the only ones i need to see anymore are at the track!!!  i’ve had to help feed and care for them and the bottom line is just don’t care for them anymore!  the city gals though, its all new and exciting.  so good for them.  i on the other hand have hit the fields.  hit them for one last time!  the boss called yesterday and told me to report to the boons on monday of next.  so.  there you go.  summer vacation is officially over on sunday night.  what a bummer…
but the season is changing.  i’ve seen the leaves out there in the back 200, some of them have those colors of autumn.  and the crows seem to rounding up.  this morning the fields were empty, no canada geese and no sand hill cranes.  and no ducks…
which reminds me: