Me on George the tawny horse with a butterscotch mane at the trail ride stables. I say to the trail guide, “Take one of just me and George… I want to put it in my office to look at every day.” George is magnificent and uninspired to moving too quickly. His whole raison d’etre being to follow the lead horse at a reasonable pace and sneak the occasional bit of greenery, which is often as I have no ability to use the reins and George knows this. We are happy together.
Kayla the trail guide. All blonde hair and freckles, a country lass unaware of her sweetness and the charm of her stories about being home-schooled and how she lives for horses, has five part-time jobs to keep one horse and how a horse will tell you what’s wrong with you, emotionally or physically, because if you spend enough time with it the horse takes on your problems and you can see yourself in them like a mirror.
Children in my house eating watermelon and jumping on a mini trampoline. Occasionally at the same time. To which I say: “No choking please… because
I am not in the mood today for children choking in my house.”
Tiny hands shoveling spoonfuls of peaches and ice cream.
Tiny hands picking fat blackberries. Also argument over how there isn’t an equal number of ripe ones for all three sets of hands.
Three orders of poutine at the beach. Most of which is eaten. None of which is mine. Mine is an order of fries.
Seagulls awaiting poutine.
Flip-flops flopping in the water. Until they’re nearly stolen by the lake and the better idea by the wearer of the flip-flops is that I carry them.
Skinny legged beach cartwheels. Dozens it seems, one sweeter than the next. Not mine, by the way. I have neither skinny legs nor ever been able to master the sweet cartwheel… only the kind that goes by a different description. After that, some other gymnastic moves that need only ribbons to make them an Olympic event. (Now there we have something I’m good at: ribbon dancing.)
Lad skipping stones. Correction. Lad trying to skip stones. Lads, I discover, aren’t especially amused when aunties come along and say Want me to show you how it’s done? And then do.
And other stones. Especially those as described in the wonderful Pinny in Summer, which is read aloud to the soundtrack of Lake Ontario waves. (Smiles all around when we find JUST THE PERFECT ONE.)
Cloud shaped like the skeleton of a rabbit. Sad but true.
A radiant palm holding five colours of beach glass: white, green, dark blue, brown and possibly yellow, or just pale pale brown. Either way, ridiculously exciting haul.