As the gentle October breeze blew over the great lake it provided both, warmth on the face that evoked memories of summer days not long ago and briskness on the arms that hinted at winter days not far from now.
My family was returning to our summer cottage for the first time in four or five weeks. We spend most of summer at the tiny lake escape, but in the time since we left on Labor Day, school days had started, soccer seasons were underway and leaves were beginning to change color.
With a Columbus Day school holiday, we had just used the long weekend to board up the beloved cottage for winter and were taking a walk on the beach. This would be our final walk of the year as we grabbed fleeces and sweatshirts instead of the sun hats and swimsuits that accompanied us just two months earlier.
Often bustling and busy in the height of summer weekends, the beach was now ours to play and walk. The kids raced ahead and doubled back chasing waves or gulls while my husband and I talked and looked for rocks and beach glass.