|A month ago already?|
August isn’t here quite yet – two more days left in July – but the St.-Johnswort is giving way to spotted knapweed already, and August is in my bookstore headlights, with no fewer than four author events scheduled for the coming month. Fiction, photography, and a couple of nonfiction books will be the highlights, and we’ll cover World War II, Leelanau County, natural history, and golf. Barbara Stark-Nemon’s reading will take place on a Wednesday evening; Ken Scott will sign books on Saturday afternoon following the dog parade; Jerry Dennis and Glenn Wolff will be with us on a Sunday afternoon, and so, the following week, will Ross Biddiscombe, with his tales of the Ryder Cup. I’ve just finished reading A Walk in the Animal Kingdom and now want to go back and re-read parts of Even in Darkness. Homework, doncha know?
Late July brought real summer to northern Michigan at last. You can almost see the corn grow. Cherry harvest is going full-tilt. (Slow down on the roads, please, and signal your intentions clearly. Roads are no place for surprises.) We’ve had sunny days and balmy nights, perfect weather for beach and picnics, family reunions and reading in a hammock. One beautiful morning this week I sat outside with my first cup of coffee and sleepily imagined (this was before sunrise) what I would be doing if I had horses. I’d have to lead them out of the barn and put them out in the pasture (currently only a meadow) and give them water, but then I could install myself in a nearby chaise longue in the shade and doze off over a book, couldn’t I? Wouldn’t you? Do you?
A more ambitious Michigan book person (although she admits she camps in a hammock tent) is Loreen Niewenhuis, who visited Northport on Tuesday to sign books at Dog Ears and present her third slide show at the Leelanau Township Library. In the course of her ambitious adventures, chronicled in three books, Loreen has covered over 3,000 miles of Great Lakes shoreline, islands and water. She hiked the first two thousand miles and then branched out to bicycle and kayak for parts of her islands adventure. I’m happy to let Loreen expend all that physical energy. I’m content to read her books and enjoy the hiking and biking and kayaking vicariously, from the comfort of my front porch.
I’ve really enjoyed my early mornings with the Jerry Dennis book, too, and the illustrations by Glenn Wolff are magical, such that the whole experience makes me feel like a kid again, lost in both stories and pictures, going back and forth with delight. You know how when you’re on the beach, you enjoy both sand and water, floating and swimming as well as lying in the sun or building sand castles at the shoreline? It’s a bit like that. Dreamy....