Friday, March 4, 2011

Pyjama Pants on Lake Pepin

I felt lazy. So when it was time to take my dog out for a quick potty run, I just put my coat on over my pyjamas and shoved my bare feet into my low snowboots, and headed out.

Well, it was supposed to be just a quick potty run. Instead the dog headed in the direction of Lake Pepin, and I followed obediently. For the last several days, my dog and I have been walking way out on frozen Lake Pepin. The weekend ice fishermen's trucks leave a convenient wheel rut to walk in. This time we ventured far, far out onto the Lake. I could no longer distinguish the buildings in Maiden Rock. From that vantage point out on the ice, the buildings seemed to fade away or blend into the background. All I could see all around me was a vast expanse of white and then in the distance bluff upon bluff dotted with evergreens and the wooded inlets with their 3-tiered contrasts of honey-brown stands of native grasses against the taller red-brown sumacs against the still taller dark green fir trees. The sun bounced off the snow and glinted off the tops of the trees. The sky was hyacinth blue. Mother Nature - she is glorious.

We stayed out on the Lake for nearly two hours. The dog, at times, was completely out of my sight. Then my eyes would catch a flash of light brown on the white snow, and I'd see him off in the distance, his head turning slowly as he panned the distance until he spotted me. "Ah, there she is - she's fine - I can keep on running" his ears would say (stand-up Shepherd ears can talk), and he'd dash off again and fade from my sight.

As I said, we were out there wandering around on the frozen Lake for nearly two hours. I thought to myself, "I'll stay here forever." And then I clearly heard my mother's voice say in my head, "Not in those pyjama pants."

Suddenly aware of my almost numb hatless, gloveless, pyjama-bottomed self, my dog and I walked back. The bluffs receded and the buildings of Maiden Rock returned.

"A pot of hot tea, " I said to my dog. "Breakfast," said my dog's ears.