And that gets me to my own childhood memories. My Grandparents' cabin at Pymatuning Lake. This is one of my all time favorite scrapbook pages - a few years old but with classic Chatterbox papers - it's timeless, just like my memories.
And here's my journaling:
I love this photo of my grandfather. He's holding up the catch of the day, in front of his boat. He's every bit Henry Fonda in On Golden Pond (one of my favorite movies).I close my eyes, and this is what I remember:
In the 1970s, my grandparents built the 'cabin' at Pymatuning Lake. Their cabin spoiled any future camping excursions for me. I thought roughing it was wall to wall carpet, a modern indoor bathroom, a brand new two bedroom Ryan home.
Our whole extended family gathered there on a few occasions in the early days, when it was still being built. But I don't recall it ever becoming a family retreat. I'm guessing my parents were too busy working to take days and weekends off to vacation there. Most of my memories are of just my grandparents and Kim and me. I'm pretty sure they took turns taking all us kids, but my childhood memories are pretty self-centered - if it didn't have to do with me, I pretty much don't remember it!
What I do remember most is the peace and the meandering pace of our days at the cabin. (although, I can't imagine Kim and me weren't continually squabbling, nor Grandma & Grandpap, either!). The only time I remember rushing was to the water's edge.
I think it was in the mid 80s that my grandparents sold the cabin. It was too much of a drive for my grandparents, and too much upkeep during the dormant seasons. It was bought be a local family - as their real home. That always made me happy - the cabin would be loved, and lived in year round.
The deafening noise the crickets made at night.
The steep drop off on the right side of our tiny beach.
Catching minnows in the ditch adjacent to the cabin.
Waking to the smell & sound of bacon cooking, my grandfather at the stove.
Days, sometimes weeks, with out a phone call.
Fishing without a hook (to my grandfather's teasing & feigned dismay).
Endless card games around the table, while the lightening crashed around us.
The excitement of running down the path and being welcomed by the lake.
Kim and Grandpap getting up in the pitch dark to take the boat out.
Always feeling uneasy and vulnerable on the boat.
Huge mosquito bites.
Lazy days spent reading in the sweltering heat.
Walking down the street to the little store for a treat.
Chicken loaf, pickles & mustard on white bread.
Static on the old b&w TV.
Digging in the sand.
Wading up to my knees in the tepid, murky water.
The cool mud oozing between my toes.
Other people's litter on the tiny beach.
Picking berries at an Amish Farm.
Homemade strawberry jam on white bread.
Finally being old enough to walk down to the water by myself.
Days that seemed to last forever.
Days I thought would last forever.