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27 May 2007 @ 12:27 pm
waiting for the first lightning bug  
It's now that time in late May when each day summer reminds me more and more why I love it so much.

The next wonderful thing that will appear will be the lightning bugs.

Every year the cat and I sit out on the porch (now the balcony) at twilight and wait for the first lightning bug.

Yesterday was the first anniversary of Mom's death.

I always did think of her the most at this beautiful time of the year, because her birthday was June 3rd, her anniversary was May 20th, and Mothers Day is in mid-May.

I still believe she passed away on May 26th because she somehow knew that's when there would be the most joy to make up for the sadness.

When I spend long very active hours outdoors in summer I lose all anxiety and get totally into the present. Then at the end of these days I notice I feel an intensely calm compassion.

Judgementalism and resentfulness are completely absent.

That's why I claim that vigorous activity in beautiful weather is a form of meditation for me.

I've tried to learn about meditation, and descriptions of it and why it is good always sound just like what I experience on long strenuous summer days outdoors.

I had several of those days this past week even though I worked all five weekdays.

I took that little pontoon boat out from the boat ramp south of Dayton three times with the new little 2HP motor. I am very happy with the quietness and adequacy of the tiny 28-lb. motor and how comfortable I am with driving the little 45 pound rig with it. I don't think it will be practical or safe to try to get this boat on plane but going upstream is so hassle-free at displacement hull speed (3.5 mph) that I'll just settle for that.

When I get to the "ledges" that are every mile or two along Ohio streams I will just walk over or around them.

These are the spots where the stream gets very shallow and wide and the current is too strong for the motor to overtake.

I encountered two of these "ledges" this week and it was extremely easy to just shut off the motor and just carry it and the tiny boat around the ledge and then resume travelling upstream.

I really bought this boat and motor for winters in Louisiana and south-west Mississippi. It is cold enough there then I will still need to wear a wetsuit so I will be immune from hypothermia.

Even with a bulky wetsuit this boat and motor should be easy to handle.

And the current in Louisiana is one third what it is in Ohio and there are no ledges in the bayous.

For here in Ohio in summer, I think the folding kayak I bought in August will be my main watercraft. It's long and skinny so it can go twice as fast as the little pontoon boat. It is useless in cooler weather because as I said recently it is totally incompatible with a wetsuit. But from mid-May through mid-September, I think I will really love it.

I still will be taking the little pontoon boat out this summer because I want to get really good at driving it and because I want to learn how many miles per gallon I can get from it and the little motor.

And, speaking of that, I rode my little 120-mpg folding motorized bike to Camden yesterday, folded it up and put it in the garage and drove back here to Dayton on my 80-mpg motorcycle. I even cut the grass one more time with the non-motorized mower. (It seems to be holding up well, unlike the first one that broke.)

I found a great place to park the motorcycle here at the condo.

If the rain holds off, the Honda Rebel will be what I drive to Columbus this afternoon.

I'm going to Dad's and then tomorrow we'll have a picnic there. Of course, I'll have all of my rain gear in case I do get into any showers.

Last night I went to a picnic at Dan and Mary's and got caught in a shower on the way home but I just waited it out under an overhang.

Then, I got back downtown just in time to watch the Memorial Day fireworks.