The Twin Cities Gay Pride festival kicks off in Loring Park today, and I’m sitting in a stranger’s cabin, on a lake I don’t know the name of, somewhere between Backus and Hackensack in Northern Minnesota – three hours from home, and three miles from any pavement.
I love it.
My Southern friend Stuart and myself drove up here for the weekend. And by Southern, I mean Texas, not Albert Lea. We arrived around 10:30 last night and he couldn’t wait to go fishing. “Night fishing,” he explained, “was the best.” Five minutes later, after losing one lure to a battle with seaweed and having nearly been carried away by mosquitoes, he gave up. We retreated to the house.
This place reminds me very much of the house I grew up in. There’s a lake down the hill, a dock, a boat. The decor is “country cottage” except there are a few amenities here that I didn’t expect. Like air conditioning. And wireless broadband internet access. And stainless steel appliances in the kitchen with granite countertops. And three boats – yes, canoes and paddle boats count.
They have a forest full of birch trees here. I’ve always loved birch. They’re pretty and stand apart from the rest of the forest with their white paper bark that sets them apart. That and they are great to start fires with – the bark burns so quickly.
The sky is a little cloudy, and the only sound I hear is the hum of the refrigerator and a clock somewhere, ticking. I’ve already drank a half pot of coffee and prepared all the ingredients for pancakes and readied the electric skillet – I just need Stuart to wake up and make them for me.
Happy Pride, from Backus, or er, Hackensack … or wherever the hell I am.