Moments

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A brief moment by the lake before the cool breeze pushed back, then the moment was gone.  But, for that moment, an opportunity to commune with the Great Lake, to listen to the song of the waves, to be touched by the fingers of wind as they move through her hair.  How many more of these moments exist for her, for any of us?

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Life and Death

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Hospitals…a place to find healing and where healing is no longer possible.  Entering a hospital can be a positive experience, especially when going in for a treatment that will improve one’s quality of life.  But it also can be where a patient can discover that healing is not possible, that our time on this planet is drawing to a close, that it’s time to put affairs in order and prepare goodbyes.

Two years ago I made this journey with my father.  Years of fighting a battle that could not be won, finally a few months in hospice before moving on to the next big adventure.  Now, two years later, I prepare to walk this journey with my mother.  A trip to the hospital, tests run, diagnosis determined, hospice prescribed.  She will spend her last days?, weeks? or months? on the shore of Lake Superior.  She may see the lake once or twice, or not at all.  It all depends on her energy level.  But at least she is nearby rather than two hours away.  She is minutes away from my home, near the lake that means so much to my wife and me.  The winds that blow down the lake carries its spirit over the sand dunes and through the health center, bathing her in the peace of Gitchi Gummi.  After ninety-four years, she can rest as the power of the lake carries her, guides her and comforts her on her next grand adventure.  As her last breath sighs forth from her frail body, the wind off the lake will carry that breath onward, taking it to places we can only imagine until each of us breathes our last and joins all the other breaths dancing and swirling in the wind.

Wind and Water

We have very strong winds in Minnesota today which is causing some serious wave action on Lake Superior.  I took a short drive to a spot just up the shore from Duluth called Stoney Point to see if there was a possible photo op, yep!  Stoney Point is also the location of an old fishing shack, which has probably been photographed by every photographer in the area and beyond.  Everyone has there own take on the relic, I’ve included one of mine.

Evidence of Winter Winds #1

Our northern winters can be downright brutal at times.  But that doesn’t mean that all beauty has left us, nature always finds a way to offer up art to the masses.

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A Piece of Rock

As I previously mentioned, Tettegouche is one of my favorite Minnesota state parks and one of its most famous landmarks was the stone arch.  On one of our trips to the park,  my wife and I had the chance to kayak through the arch.  However, in late August of 2010, the bridge portion of the landmark collapsed into the lake and left behind a stack rather than an arch.  Because of its location, this part of Lake Superior’s north shore is often subject to large waves from storms and when that happens during frigid winter weather, the blowing spray can create unusual ice formations along the rocky shore and on the trees.

In case you haven’t figured it out, the three bottom images are from the same day, but from opposite sides.  The first two are looking south from Shovel Point, the Watcher is looking north.