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Cottages! Lakes! Beer!

Posted by Robyn / July 19, 2006

or, the Montreal Love Affair Is on Hiatus
I do love this town, especially in the summer. I don't even complain about the heat - because I know it's going to end, that there will be a break in the form of a storm, a nice breeze, or just an abating of the humidity. Plus, check out all the hott people, whoa.

Of course, I say this as a person who was out of town last weekend. I heard it was pretty hot. Hard to breathe? No respite from the humidity except in the weird faux-cool of air-conditioning? You know what's good? LAKES. And COTTAGES. And FRESH AIR THAT COMES IN SOFT WIND FORM.

The last time I was at a cottage, I was ten years old. It was somewhere in Bruce County, Ontario, near my grandparents' house. I had been living in that part of Ontario for half a year - all of it was kind of shocking: it snowed a lot, I had never been to Ontario before, plus, I had flown there after living in California for half a year... Yet still, I did not complain. Why? Snow is awesome to little kids, and cottages on lakes in summertime are awesomer.

However, I still consider a cottage a thatched little deal out of Andersen and Grimm fairy tales. West-coasters have cabins. Or tents. Maybe vacation houses, I don't know, it's a different place out there, y'know, we wear raincoat-technology and go to the beach and take ferries n' stuff. Which is all to say that I find the very idea of having a cottage totally novel and amazing. So when I was invited to a cottage for the weekend, my stomach fluttered with monarch butterflies. Which I saw. In real life.

Awesome things about cottage: cool, clear lake; canoeing; swimming with goggles; looking at fish; fish looking at you; jumping off rocks; drinking a steady stream of beer from late afternoon until laaate; laying on the dock looking at the crazy crazy kabillions of stars; big orange moon; skinny dipping; bbqing everything (hello, cherry tomatoes and mushrooms, so this is how you are meant to be); reading paperbacks in deck chairs (without cringing!); sunshine, both full-force and dappled by trees; 15-minute storms; guitars; singing; quietness; darkness; friendly friends who are greatness.

Not so great things: bugs, but one gets used to them; bug bites, but one just itches (I am still scratching my ankles, which I'm pretty sure are less shield-yr-eyes! white now than in the above photo.) Okay, I can't think of anything else that's bad. I want to live the rest of the summer at a cottage. Is that wrong? What will I miss out on? What will I turn into? I mean, I just got into wearing heels and low-cut tops, Mtl-style! I'm not quite ready to revert!

How about maybe just for a month or two? Yet even after two days of lake swimming and laying in the sun, my hair began a journey towards dreads. And though this freaked me out at first, I believe in nature's course. And if nature wants me to be a hippie for a while, then so be it. But, wait, let's think about this: DREADS?? Impossible. I would sooner kill a squirrel and use its backbone as a comb. I mean, carve a comb out of a tree, yeah. And you know the first thing I did when I got home was shower and wash that hair.

But in the moment, with the sun beaming down on my face, listening to the lake slap against the dock, I mean, lovingly slap, I cared nothing for style and the city. Yet now that I'm back here, I appreciate this town and my high heels all the more. As long as I can escape every once in a while to one of civilization's greatest inventions, The Cottage/Cabin/Vacation Home on a Lake in the Relative Middle of Nowhere.



Sara / July 20, 2006 at 12:06 am
you know what your cottage was missing? FOUR BABY RACCOONS. check out the ones j mac took this weekend at willy's:
Hannah / July 20, 2006 at 11:25 am
The Swedes have an interesting take on the cottage aesthetic. Not only do they embrace the idea of playing hooky from work and loafing about (okay, I imagine Swedish loafing involves hiking up several mountains before breakfast, and then designing a new coffee table, but anyway...) The point being, that the classic Swedish cottage is a little Falu red bungalow with white gables. <a href= "";> So cute</a>.

(As an aside, I couldn't agree with you more about the weirdness of air conditioning. Especially in Quebec. We spend at least 4 months complaining about the cold, suck it up and bask in the heat for a week. <a href="";>What's a little bit of sweat among friends?</a>
rrrobyn / July 20, 2006 at 12:13 pm
omg, those baby racoons are the CUET.
i saw a chipmunk trying to get into a beer bottle! it didn't manage though. also: as if there was any beer left in it.
Supun / February 5, 2015 at 04:24 am
We have had a beautiful time, the evinronment is relaxing, quiet and we wanted for nothing. We enjoyed our walks to to the wineries and into town and have had a thoroughly perfect experience. We have been talking about coming back with our husbands. Thank you very much. It was only a short stay but wonderful.

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