Arriving at our destination—a favorite place to relax and unwind and where a portion of the original Route 66 pavement runs along Spring River—we circled Kellogg Lake twice looking for the perfect location to spread our rug and picnic on the grass with a view of the water.
As we made our first go-around, in front of the lakeside stone pavilion a very large flock of Canadian geese completely blocked our passage. We waited patiently amused as we watched them decide to slowly go waddling and flip-flopping their way up the steep embankment and out of our path while sporting their gleaming white face masks like chin straps. When just a few stragglers hung behind and voiced indecision about joining the others, the entire consortium turned around and blithely ambled back over the road in the other direction. Our dinner appetites ripening, we watched and waited some more.
On our second go-around, passing the boat ramp we saw quite a few folks comfortable in assorted lawn chairs. Quietly bantering back and forth, surrounded by coolers and tackle boxes, they sat with fishing poles at the ready to make their evening catches.
One large family had come to unload for an evening excursion over the lake’s calm surface. Their flatbed truck filled with sleek crafts looked like a colorful bouquet of pointed flowers. With paddles like leaves sticking out here and there in every direction, one by one they launched and began quietly slicing the water—a family flotilla of kayaks—mother and father and an assortment of boys in varying sizes, each and every one wearing life vests and baseball caps.
Seeming to arrive out of nowhere, thoroughly enjoying the splashing and laughing of horseplay, boy members of the family flotilla chopped their way into the placid waters just before us, calling up images of other hatted paddlers moving a bit more languidly through the waters of the Yerres river across the ocean in France.
Perhaps you will be inspired to don a summer hat and take a spin around Kellogg Lake where you can enjoy the dancing fountain, boat, picnic, fish, hike, play Frisbee, cloud and bird watch and conjure images of other flotillas out for summer pleasures while enjoying the gifts of Mother Nature’s waters.
For a summery outing right in town be sure to visit the JASON SHELFER | SCULPTURAL SPECTACULAR— the free drive-through exhibition now on view at artCentral, 1110 East Thirteenth Street in Carthage.