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#122 Cottages

I never had a cottage growing up as a kid. But my friend’s parents did. So whenever possible, I would beg him to take me for at least one night. Even twenty-four hours at a cottage can change things. Even as you drive north, your shoulders start to fall from beside your ears (where they normally rest) and you begin to breathe deeper as you roll down your window and take in the fresh country air. Gone is the hustle of the city, of all the things that you need to do for work. The buildings have all now been replaced with lush, green trees that welcome you to the north.

By the time you arrive at the cottage, you’re already half asleep. You unload the car of your overnight gear and groceries before setting up in your room. By “setting up” I mean dropping your bag, changing into comfy sweatpants (bathing suit is optional) and grabbing a book, some magazines, and some snacks before heading out to the dock.

You slip into your flip flops, and take in the scene before you. What lies just beyond your screen door is a glistening lake that is surrounded by large green trees. There are cottages around the lake, but you can only see the tiny docks protruding from the shore. You see your own dock that is accompanied by a motor boat and lounge chairs that are ready for your arrival. You grab a towel and head out to take your spot for the day. You lather up in sunscreen and throw on your sombrero-sized hat to protect you from any sun damage before settling in to read, relax, swim, and eat.

After a full day of reading, relaxing, swimming and eating, you’re ready for dinner. So you pack up your belongings and head inside to help make the BBQ, which is what you do when you’re at the cottage. Of course there are fresh salads, coleslaw, and vegetables to accompany the BBQ. But the BBQ is the main focus when at the cottage. Feel free to make burgers, veggie burgers, steak, ribs or fish. Just BBQ It because it’s always better on the BBQ.

Bellies full, it’s time to make a fire and roast some marshmallows. You can eat the marshmallows simply roasted if you like. But why would you do such a thing when you have the possibility of s’mores? So get your graham crackers and chocolate ready ‘cause there’s nothing like melted chocolate and roasted marshmallows between two graham crackers. If you’ve got guitars, play ‘em. If you’ve got songs, sing ‘em. Just enjoy that fire - it’s light and it’s smell on your clothes (especially the next day).

After the fire is done, it’s time to head inside to curl up on the couch and watch a movie until you pass out from all the relaxation. Drag yourself to your room and just collapse because you’re already in your sweatpants anyway. Enjoy the best sleep of your life because there is no sleep better than at the cottage. Let your body wake up when it’s good and ready; or at least when the birds start to sing. No need to change out of your sweats. The cottage is where it’s not only accepted to be filthy, but’s it’s celebrated. So bypass the shower, make yourself a morning coffee, and head out to the dock to sit in your lounge chair and do it all over again, because COTTAGES TRULY CHANGE EVERYTHING!


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