Monday, April 7, 2008

Sunshine, Duck Feeding, Ice Cream and Other Spring Clichés

We're going on three days in a row of glorious sun therapy. And you know I need it.

Sunday, I took the ladies to "The Loophole." The Loophole is a little secret of mine, the only place on the wide, scenic Lake St. Clair shorefront in Grosse Pointe that normal commoners like us are allowed to set foot. The rest has been eaten up by yacht clubs, mansions, and other gated, members-only facilities - all heavily patrolled by the Grosse Pointe Fuzz and all with the shared aim of keeping the riffraff out. But I am nothing if not a finder of loopholes and many years ago my poor, dirty ass discovered The Loophole after a couple of wrong turns driving a truckload of trees to a landscaping job.

The Loophole is a war memorial, an old mansion that's been converted into a public space with a garden and manicured lawn that ends in a 200-foot wide concrete wall at the water's edge. Since Lake St. Clair is so large that you can't see the shore on the other side, this is the closest that Detroiters can get to the "ocean" feeling and I used to go here all the time by myself to think, drink beers and play Texas Hold 'Em with God.

But I've been promising to take Kirsten there for a while, as soon as we got some decent weather, and Sunday nature finally complied. It was ridiculously tranquil, even if it felt a bit like cheating. The fact that global warming has somehow resulted in an extra month of winter every year is one of the cruelest ironies of my lifetime. (I would put it right behind the fact that my plus-sized head doesn't make me any smarter.) And I know, even if everybody else has forgotten, that we're going to get blasted with more winter weather before all is said and done this year. But it sure was fun to pretend otherwise this weekend.

Claire has these looks. These faraway looks sometimes that just kill me. She's not an oldsoul or a newsoul. She's a widesoul. Completely ancient and brand new at the same time.

Claire wanted to feed the ducks and, since we'd just come from the grocery store, we had a loaf of bread handy for just such an occasion. Unfortunately, there were no ducks nearby, just a couple way out on the lake. So it wasn't long before Kirst and Claire got tired of waiting and started chowing down.

Then, suddenly a duck did show up and started looking for bread in Claire's neck.

Click here to see all of the lake pics.

Later, Kirst and Claire made ice cream with some kind of scientifically dubious process involving ice cubes, a ziploc bag, several ingredients and lots of odd, gloved hand-rolling.

Click here to see all of the ice cream-making pics.

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