But if you decide to make thrills your regular diet and try to prolong them artificially, they will all get weaker and weaker, and fewer and fewer, and you will be a bored disillusioned old man for the rest of your life. It is because so few people understand this that you will find middle-aged men and women maundering about their lost youth, at the very age when new horizons ought to be appearing and new doors opening all around them. It is much better fun to learn to swim than to go on endlessly and hopelessly trying to get back the feeling you had when you first when paddling as a small boy.
I didn’t write that. C.S. Lewis did, around about 1944, long before he became posthumously famous for his Narnia trilogy. Mr. Lewis was an amazing author, a contemporary of J.R.R Tolkein, and his books are among the best books that you’ve never heard of. Till We Have Faces is a special delight. But with these respects paid, I must take umbrage with Mr. Lewis and his quote. While he is overwhelmingly correct in one sense, he is mistaken if I take him at a purely literal interpretation. While we shouldn’t flail at grasping fleeting, destructive joys, why can’t we work to get back to that youthful feeling of paddling in clean waters? What if our childhoods are full of fond memories? What if we aren’t so much chasing a lost past as we are intent on pursuing a future that at least closely resembles it?
A vacation home at Lake Geneva, for many, is a dream. It isn’t something approached lightly and on a whim. It is, instead, a body of water that represents the fulfillment of closely held dreams, as it has for generations. When my father was a child, he would ride the train to Williams Bay, and in splashing on the public beach, a dream was born. There was sacrifice later, and that dream one day became a reality. His dream has since blessed me and my children, and likely their children. A man pursued a dream and generations of his offspring will be grateful because of a particularly fondness for paddling around in shallow water.
Why can’t we find enough courage to be faithful to a dream? Is it so hard to want something long enough that the object of our affection becomes less a dream and more a typical sunny Saturday? These dreams are there, where they have always been, and yet when we might finally be ready to realize them we find something else to pass the time. This is our problem.
2011 was a tremendous year. I was blessed with nearly $15MM in sales, and am proud to tell you that all but one $227k sale represented Lake Geneva vacation home purchases. I know no other agent who can boast this dedication and narrow focus on one singular market. There were lakefront sales this year, and from May of 2010 through today I have been fortunate to assist on 10 single family lakefront transaction sides, the most of any agent in this market over that tenure. I have been incredibly blessed, and those who are the key to my success are those men and women realizing their own lifelong dreams.
Yesterday, this blog passed 80,000 page views for the year. This exceeded the goal I set of 70,000 views, and I am grateful to everyone who reads this gibberish each week. I try to make it worth your while. I’m not sure how to keep the growth moving forward but remain optimistic enough to set my 2012 goal at 100,000 page views. I figure if most people reading this would forward the site link on to friends or co-workers who might find it relevant, then my goal is easily achievable. My sales goals remain mostly unset, though to stack similar amounts onto the $33MM from the past 24 months would be a most welcome addition. For those who prefer their Lake Geneva fix in print form, Summer Homes For City People 2012 will print in May. It will be a fun year.
I am generally jealous with my possessions. I don’t share well. When I see someone doing something that I’d like to be doing, I’m envious, and it’s ugly. But when I’m plying the waters of Geneva on a sunny afternoon, I do not feel this way when others pass by. I love sharing Geneva with others, particularly when those people are simply living out their dream in much the same way that I’m living out mine. If 2012 is the year you chase down your own Lake Geneva dream and establish a legacy here, I’d love to be the guy to help. Here’s to a healthy, happy, Lake Geneva filled new year.