A winter project was the
memory or heritage wall. It all
started out as a way to mark
my nephew's wedding by
going through the family
albums and picking out the
images of my parents
courting. In the process, I
learned that my parents at one
time totally got into the
northern experience of
camping, boating and lake life.
There was to be no hint of this
over my childhood. We would
go to the lakes to picnic but
the idea of having a cottage of
truly living the lake life was
right out, dismissed as too
much work.

With a little more exploring the
influences that lead to my lake
life were taken into the
project. Harry Cross building
his cottage out at Sourdough
Bay was special as that was
my introduction to lake life.
Almost every summer
weekend, I would go out to the
cottage with the Cross family
and was pressed into working
on the cabin. Once built, it only
had to be enjoyed.

In our family, the other great
cottager was my Uncle Bob
Nielsen who started with a
grand old trailer at Clear Lake
and worked up to a cottage in
the residence section of the
park. They had the lifestyle
and indoor plumbing - very
impressive.

With a little more digging
around two other images
emerged. One of my never
known Uncle Morley standing
by a mountain tour boat. He,
like the others is dressed to
the nines for an afternoon's
outing on some mountain lake.
Mountains would claim his life
in a car accident. Another was
an image of my Grandfather,
also never known, Bliss
Goodwin out rowing with his
kids. That is probably Dad and
Helen in the front of the boar
with Gilbert and Mary in the
rear. They were living the
empire life in their summer
whites oblivious to the tragic
end to their family lives that
would follow a few years on.

This heritage wall is in the
living room of the cottage,
itself decorated with the stuff
of the images: paddles, an oar,
bits of canoes and dock
hardware. It is a way to
involve the family history in
the heritage atmosphere of
the cottage itself.
There is something comforting
about knowing that time was
taken to enjoy the day, back in
the day. That was not my
impression growing up when all
was getting an education and
doing things the right way and
constant doing, come to think of
it. Taking time out to enjoy the
great outdoors in whatever
form it may take is a good thing.