Mother Nature gave us a gift yesterday-----a lovely day with a slight hint of spring. When I went out to do the morning chores, I saw light in the eastern sky. Daylight is noticeably increasing, and that is nice.
Then, came the sun, and it hung around for most of the day. I remember moments of consciously soaking it up while watching the dogs play.
Later, Bill, Kiwi and I climbed in the pickup and headed north. Snowshoes remained planted in a mass of snow which has been in the pickup bed for the past several weeks. We planned to use them if the opportunity arose.
And, it did, as we drove the Meadow Creek Road northeast of Bonners Ferry and saw strings of other tracks across Dawson Lake.
“Let’s go here,” I suggested. So, Bill drove a little ways further, turned around and then parked along the roadside just above the Forest Service restroom and a dock leading out to the lake.
On came the snow pants and then the snow shoes. Bill and Kiwi had already trudged about halfway across the lake by the time I headed down the hill with my camera.
The entire experience was exhilarating, 'cept for maybe when I fell down and my camera took a dip in the snow. While lying there drying it off, I noticed that just below the snow were water deposits and soft ice.
Thinking this was not good, I called for Bill to come and help me up, figuring that the less I tumbled around in my usual clumsy sumo wrestler-type moves, the chances of breaking through ice would lessen.
After Bill helped me up, he assured me that there was plenty of ice between me and the cold waters of Lake Dawson.
So, we moved on toward an area where some locals from Bonners were enjoying a fishing outing. At first, we could see just their ghostlike figures near a fire they had started out on the lake.
They were wrapping up for the day and eventually came into a clearer view. After a quick visit, we moved on and eventually back to the pickup. I loved the experience because it was out in the open with plenty of sunlight and no real destination except enjoying parts of the lake which we normally don't see.
As we were driving back on HWY 2, Bill asked if I wanted to stop for a minute at the 3-Mile Antique Mall. I've driven past the place at the junction of HWY 95 and HWY 2 dozens of times and always thought it would be cool to see what's inside cuz the outside decor is filled with eye-catching antiques.
So, we pulled in, parked, told Kiwi she would have to stay in the pickup and walked inside to a nostalgic wonderland of the past. Literally thousands of items are attractively arranged in such a fashion that one feels transported to another time.
Memories of childhood abound while strolling through the aisles to visit numerous nooks and crannies filled with yesteryear.
So many items were my favorites, like the copper statues reminding me of decorations on our end tables and Charlie Russell paintings hanging on our walls back at the old North Boyer house.
I certainly thought of my parents a lot during the visit and even mentioned to Mike McGinnis, who owns the establishment with his wife Denise, that my dad grew up on the north bench. Mike noted he lives on the north bench.
The 20 minutes or so spent inside that virtual museum of treasures, gleaned from estate sales and general buying and selling, inspired me to think of future visits, maybe even with other family members who would equally enjoy the many tangible items providing vignettes to our rural upbringing.
Twas a wonderful day, filled with sunshine, a great snowshoeing adventure and a fabulous sentimental journey.
Thanks, Mike, for graciously letting me take your photo. Hope to see you again.
And, this Monday is filled with fun. In precisely an hour, I'll be sitting at Farmin-Stidwell School pronouncing words for the rescheduled school spelling bee, and in another ten hours or so, we'll be sitting in front of the tube, cheering on the ZAGS to victory No. 20 with no defeats. We hope and pray anyway!
Go, ZAGS! Happy Monday.