Solitude, awakened, every morning since that last ice age left these rocky mountains so rocky, left those fish to swim in pristine waters.
This lake witnesses these mountains cradling their lakes, like cupped-hand puddles.
While cabins rest lakeside, nature moved over a bit, to allow them.
Occupants sleeping late, or maybe it’s my earnest earliness.
Audacious declaration, independence, here.
Sunshine, clouds, gentleness resides in these mornings.
Forever – recalculating – maybe there is more.
People come, to see, settle, just to visit, or return home.
Hosts and native residents ask, ‘where are you from?’. Breakfast servers chime, ‘what do you have planned today?’ There is peace here. On this lake, several times each day, a boat goes down-lake, crosses an unpainted border – when passengers step off they are on U.S. soil, then return, Canadian once again.
Recalculating that double border crossing, without requirement to brandish passports or submit to questions about where you’ve been, or where you are going – without need to explain why, on a three day trip in 90F weather your only purchase to declare was a sweater. As I told that ‘barely old enough to shave’ customs officer last night, ‘it’s a really cool sweater – do you want to see it?’
No more to it than that.
Our American friends celebrate independence day, toot horns, shoot fireworks and chest-thump better than any nation on earth.
I’m recalculating my way home – my internal GPS says I’m already here, familiar soil. And I’ll wear my Yellowstone sweater today. It’s ‘made in U.S.A’. So too, that memory of Old Faithful and my three day loop-around Montana.
Home now, in Alberta, recalculating, happy 4th y’all.
P.S.: travel-babble – feeling built as day wore, recalculating – Bozeman start (thank you IHOP for blueberry pancakes), cruising Helena (they have a stunning legislature and wide clean streets – nothing else compelling other urge to move along), fish & chips lunch (Uncle Joe’s Oasis Bar & Grill, Wolf Creek), surgical visit to Great Falls, to see those falls – which I liked, but I suggest renaming the place ‘Really Terrific Falls’. Wrapped the day – recalculating, recalculating … cross-country zig-zag final leg spectacular scenery angling over to Waterton, took the last rooms (visiting gig-quarters for musicians – no A/C, bunk beds and TV that doesn’t work) in time for late dinner (wild mushroom risotto w/shrimp). Recalculating … wanted to wake up on July 4th in Canada.
column written/ published from the Bayshore Inn, Waterton Lakes National Park, AB
morning walk: 11C/51F, overcast and cool, gentle breeze, my own footfalls and water lapping at the shore were only sounds I heard – this place, as always, so peaceful. No critter sighting, though I was expecting …
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