Thursday, June 11, 2009

A fountain named Bert.

On June 17, 2005 everything changed.

Before we moved to the lake, I dreamed of living near big water. An ocean, maybe. I'd savored a hefty handful of beach vacations, jealously guarding every moment of silent staring. Listening to the tattoo of waves breaking on sand. Tracking gulls and pelicans. Just soaking it up. Back then we lived in a nice old house. It had a nice old garden and small space for a new one which was so terrifically terrible for the planting of anything that I froze just considering what might be done with it. So, we engaged a garden designer and as part of the getting acquainted phase of the plan, she asked what I wanted in a garden. "Uh," I offered tentatively. "I always wanted to live near water." A professional, she didn't say, "Well, maybe you should move." She suggested that a fountain on the garage wall, which was, attractively enough, brick would allow the
sound of water at least.

It did. She found us a lion-headed fountain which my neighbor named Bert after Bert Lahr in
The Wizard of Oz. Bert got the job done. Provided the sound of water. Lulled me for years in that upland patch of pretty flowers. But I never stopped wanting big water. And it was so tantalizingly near, yet so far away behind the barrier of habit and convenience of living thirty years in the same lovely town. But we did it. On June 17, 2005 we moved to the shore of Lake Erie, ten yards from the water's edge, eight-point-eight miles and a hundred light years from our old familiar place. Bert came along, but when the pump died, we didn't replace it. Now we plant him full of flowers. A kind of reverse role from his old garden self. Of the sound of water, there is now a plentiful supply.

This blog is a journal of water and our life at its edge.

June 11, 2009

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