A Countdown

A Countdown

Last night, a car commercial told me that I have 3000 thoughts each day. That baritone voiced man obviously doesn’t know me, for I’d gladly argue that I have more than that. Many more. Most are fragmented to the point that one is not yet finished when another begins. This is not to my credit. But today, there are no crowded synapses relaying mixed snippets of thought. There are no derailed trains carrying car after car of thoughts. Today there is just one thought, and it’s a sunny one. This thought is a thought that is always somewhere in my 3000 or so daily thoughts, but times, like now, it forces it’s way to the center, and renders all other thoughts woefully displaced and ultimately disgraced.

Today, I’m thinking about summer. I have to admit to you now that I’ve been in heated negotiations to procure a very mysterious boat. This boat isn’t mysterious by nature, but it’s mysterious to me since it is located more than 1000 miles from the body of water that I desire to lovingly transport it to. I have logistical problems with this boat. First off, I have no way to know if you’re just going to keep reading this blog and dream about a Lake Geneva vacation home, or if you’re actually going to call me so we can get down to the delightful business of realizing that dream. The other problem is in the location of the boat. It’s in Florida. I am in Lake Geneva. This makes traditional tire kicking much more difficult, as I must kick and prod over the internets and interwebs, and rely on the scouting reports of others. This causes me much consternation and equal heaps of tension. But, through it all, I feel as though I must buy this boat (Don’t worry, it’s cheap).

It’s this boat, and the idea of morning and late afternoon fishing trips with my son and my clients and my customers and possibly other people too, that has helped push my mind through the icy fog of a spring that has yet to arrive, and well into a summer that will be here sooner than you think. My mind swims with summer, and with boats, and tanned arms and sandaled feet. And it’s in this recharged dream that I have realized I must relay to you a message that is as profound as it should be obvious. While a Lake Geneva summer begins a mere sixty days from today, it really doesn’t care if you’re ready for it or not. A Lake Geneva summer, for all it’s deep character and unrelenting kindness, is impatient. A Lake Geneva summer waits for no man.

My summer looks like a lot of things, particularly when I stand in March and view it on the horizon. If I squint and strain and look to the point where my earth curves to the degree where the beyond is a mystery that I must imagine based on history, I can see the makings of my summer. I see boat rides and fishing trips, I see swimming and diving and hunting for crayfish. I see magazines lying on the bow of a boat, and I see me taking pictures of my feet. I see lots of things, and they all please me. But for all those things that I see, for the countless ways that a Lake Geneva summer is the most ideal of my ideals, I know there’s an expiration date on each and every one of them. A summer is finite, and it has little patience for the uninitiated or the unprepared. Excuses will not get you anywhere either, no matter who your attorney is or how well he successfully argues on your behalf.

I was going to write about how summer is like tax day, but then I realized it’s not. You see, tax day comes for many, and tax day goes. They’ll shrug at the water cooler and wax sympathetic about the woes of preparing taxes, but to many, tax day is October 15th. See, tax filings can be extended, but a Lake Geneva summer is not so easily bargained with. There are sixty days to prepare, and many, including myself, are busy making those preparations. Some Lake Geneva vacation home owner is, at this very moment, on Overton’s perusing the newest inflatable gadgets that have been engineered for the sole purpose of dragging behind a boat. There are others right now who are cursing this frosty spring weather, hoping instead for a clean break from winter so their cottages might be opened and swept and straightened and proclaimed ready for another Lake Geneva summer that has grown even closer during the past minute you’ve been reading this.

It’s not a money thing, either. This Lake Geneva summer doesn’t really care how much money you have. It doesn’t keep score by how many commas are present in your bank statement, and it can’t be pressured into any delay by your social standing. Summer cares little about such things, and a summer spent inside a suburban mansion (now with swimming pool and firepit!) cannot compare to a summer spent at even the most humble of lakeside cottages. For now, we mustn’t waste any more time. There is plenty of time to make sure this summer is different than the last. There is time to make smart financial and lifestyle decisions, and they needn’t be made in sloppy haste. There is time for careful consideration and wise maneuvering, but there is indeed a deadline on such soulful contemplation. A Lake Geneva summer is restful, exciting, peaceful and invigorating all at the same time, but what it is not is patient. Ready or not, here it comes.

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