Morning Light

It is late summer, and our days have been very full. We were socked in with fog in the morning, and I grabbed my camera and took it along on my walk. Wow, was I glad that I did! As I reached the terminus of my walk, the bright rays of morning sun came out and pierced the fog.

The light was like a physical, touchable thing; heavy shafts of it, cutting like a knife. There are moments when you just end up at the right place at the right time, and this was one of them. I walked around taking pictures - I couldn't believe my good luck. When the first rays pierced the darkness, it was almost as though the angels sang!

When I got home, we had a bite to eat and then we took off for Bald Eagle State Park. The park swimming areas will be closing in the coming few weeks, and we are trying to maximize our swimming. We've been going about twice a week; now it's as often as possible.

When we got there, huge, dark clouds were roiling around the sky, and we set our chairs up at the edge of the sand. I have a half-groundsheet that I usually park my stuff on, especially so on this day, as the ground was soaking wet from recent rains.

I spotted some green stuff in the water and I wondered if it was regular algae or the bad blue-green algae. How does one tell? I wondered. I may not have let my child or my dog swim in it, but WE did. The algae was more concentrated along the shore, and better out near the rope that lines the swimming area. My rule for swimming in open natural water in late summer is simple: keep your mouth SHUT!

Well, then I spotted those dark clouds dropping some rain in the distance, and that should have been my cue, but no. . . . I had to wait until the rain was splashing on the water, and then I swam at top speed, leapt out of the water, and ran down the sand, all Baywatch babe-like, to put my camera on my chair, the groundsheet over my camera, and then move it all up under the shelter of a tree. Well, of course, it stopped raining almost instantly, but you can't really count on that.

Since I've quit working, some things have changed. I don't shower every day in the mornings anymore, to get ready for my work day. I am more inclined to shower AFTER physical activity, or at a park after we swim. You might not believe it, but as many as a third of my showers this summer have been in outdoor shower areas at our wonderful state parks. So I showered thoroughly just in case it was the bad algae, put on my regular clothes, and we left.

We'd kicked around the idea of a bag of burgers from Burger King, but my husband said he felt like a chicken. (Which is funny, as he doesn't LOOK like one.) We used to buy the $5 rotisserie chickens about every other week at Sam's Club so that our cat Dexter could have dark meat every day. So we stopped at the State College Sam's and my husband picked up a few things, while I sat in the car and read my book.

I don't know if this was the first rotisserie chicken since last October when he died, but it sure might have been. The chicken was very good, but I missed my little companion, who used to stand on his back paws while I denuded the chicken. Dexter, we miss you every single day.

So anyway, this was my day that began with bright shafts of light and angel song, continued with a swim and a mad dash to save my camera in the rain, and ended with a fine dinner of rotisserie chicken, mashed potatoes, and fresh sliced red tomatoes! All in all, a pretty fine summer's day!

Now, this has to be my soundtrack song, but there is a song that must go with it. The song I've chosen is See the Light, by Jeff Healey, who is in my opinion one of the most underrated guitar players; you heard his songs on the soundtrack to the Swayze film Road House. Jeff Healey was blind, and eventually died of cancer. I miss Jeff Healey. I miss Patrick Swayze. Road House is a terrible marvelous awful violent wonderful film and it is one of our favorites. The second song is bookends to the first: Jeff Healey, with a top-notch take on the Dylan tune When the Night Comes Falling from the Sky; here's a version that features Road House film clips.

Dalton (Swayze): You play pretty good for a blind white boy.
Cody (Healey): Yeah, and I thought you'd be bigger.

P.S. I can't believe I forgot to mention this, so I'll cover it here. You'll never guess what the snack bar at the park is selling: Berkey Creamery ice cream! They had a flavor list posted; guess what was on it. AUGUST PIE!!! Oh, and the snack bar . . . is only open on the weekends, so of course, I couldn't have any! Of COURSE NOT, bwa-ha-ha-ha-ha!

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