Like all weeks, this one has been busy. Over the weekend, we hosted BOW (Becoming an Outdoor Woman). Between students and instructors there were about 90 people. This picture shows a fishing seminar held on the patio of the lodge.
The classes are divided between one third fishing, one third hunting and one third other outdoor recreations. Of course, everything was topped off with some wonderful meals from our kitchen. With any group, we always seem to go through lots of food.
I think part of the reason people are hungry is due to the fall weather. It is just a little bit cooler and we are starting to eat some fall foods. One of the entrees for this group was pot roast. We also roasted some vegetables one night. Wild rice added to the fall feeling.
The views outside are definitely starting to look like fall. Our maples are turning red. The poplar and birch are just giving a hint of the yellows to come. I think our peak of fall color should be in 10-14 days. How long it lasts really depends on the winds. If we have some calm weather, the leaves stay on the trees for a long time. Of course, the day eventually comes when we have a good strong wind. The leaves are in the air constantly. Then you can walk through the woods and kick the small piles of fallen leaves. I remember doing that as a child and still love to do it.
There has not been a frost around here yet. We had a little up on top of the hill but my basil survived. I am hoping to get out and harvest the basil today. I pull the plants and cut off every single leaf for pesto. The pesto freezes really well. A little pasta, some grilled chicken, parmesan cheese and walnuts combined with the pesto makes a wonderful winter meal. Only problem is that we tend to eat too much.
It is also time to harvest other produce from the garden. The acorn, butternut and spaghetti squash are ready. Pumpkins are just about there too. It is time to bring in the parsley plants and dry them for winter’s use. Carrots, onions and potatoes will hold for a bit longer. This has not been a good year for tomatoes. The yellow tomatoes are doing the best. Cherry tomatoes have just started to ripen in numbers. Only one red tomato has come out of the garden yet. It was just too cool during most of the summer.
The full moon is just past its peak. What a beautiful harvest moon it has been. I watched the huge yellow globe come up last night about 8:30. Along with the harvest moon, our days are getting shorter. The days get about three minutes shorter every 24 hours. One it gets a little colder, we will start another fall and winter occurrence – fires in the fireplace. One of the best parts of living in an area with distinct seasons is that each season brings you special treats to enjoy.
Last night was one of those special treats. Bruce and I went down the lake to Campers’ Island with a bunch of neighbors. There we had the last fish fry for the season. Our plates were loaded with fried potatoes, baked beans, fried walleye, salad, corn bread, watermelon, and cookies. I am trying to attach a very short video of the event to this blog. It's not quite center correctly but that will come next.
The best part of the video is that you can hear the fire crackling and the fish frying. I am sorry that you can’t smell the fish and the fire. Everyone went home just groaning from overeating.
I am still “in training” on the front desk. Yesterday I learned how to enter inquiries into the computer system. I still have not totally mastered the art of taking reservations, checking people out, or checking people in. We had five checkouts today that I was going to learn on. When every one of them was checking out, I was on the phone, selling something in the store or talking with other guests. At least I can remember my passwords now. By next summer I might be totally conversant in the front desk computer. Then it will be time to move into the dining room and bar. Richard, our head bartender, is waiting to teach me how to tend bar! It is going to be very interesting.
Yesterday I was able to do one activity that hasn’t changed. We needed someone to take people on a pontoon boat ride. Ten guests and I took off at 2:00. I still knew how to drive the boat. Talking and telling stories is something I have never forgotten to do so the 1 ½ hours passed quickly. At least no one went to sleep. The dock boy was called away so I had to dock the boat myself. Hadn’t forgotten how to do that either.
It really was a wonderful day to be out on the lake. We went across to the north shore to look at where the fire burned in May, 2007. It is amazing to see how much growth has already occurred. Now there will not be giant red pines for a number of years but there is a start. Bruce remembers watching this same shore line grow when he was a boy. A fire swept through in 1936 just two years before he was born. He remembers that it looked kind of “scraggly” for several years. That is what we will have too. By the time I came here in 1964, the north shore was a fully grown forest. It never entered my mind that the forest has burned just 28 years earlier.
I’ll keep you up-to-date on the progress of fall color. It is my favorite time of year.