1.17.2009

trip to the lake

when i woke up today, it was gray outside as well as in my thoughts. it was one of those days where i woke up overwhelmingly missing my father and also overwhelmingly grieving about our difficulty in conceiving. i don't know why, but lately those two things go hand-in-hand for me. the only thing that i can think of is that no longer having my father around really makes me want children all the more. i think maybe everything makes more sense after the loss of a parent if you already have or are able to have your own offspring. and i think that it would mean to me that my father could "live on" through my children.

anyway, i took a picture of the gray sky, and posted it below. that was all i had for the day—or so i thought. i did not know the day would take such a nice turn and i would actually enjoy its grayness so much. or that even though the weather did not clear up, my outlook would.

it started with meeting a friend for coffee who i had not seen in twenty years. i went to high school with her, and we had recently found each other on facebook. elizabeth has one of the most clear and beautiful soprano voices that i have ever heard. we sang in the high school chorus together and we also performed in the same school talent show. she also grew to know my siblings through that talent show. we all admired her voice very much. but i remember her to be a very sweet and thoughtful person. and i was delighted to learn after twenty years that she had not changed. we had such a pleasant hour and a half of conversation and recalling things—as if no time had gone by, even after everything that has changed in our lives.

then, i returned home to gather my things and head off to lake forest where my husband's mother's aunt lives. she had asked around to see if any of her relatives wanted her good china, and no one else seemed to be takers, so the question fell to us. i readily accepted, as i have never owned a set of china. we did not register for china when we got married, but i was content not having any fancy dishes. but to have something that was handed down from family and was purchased by aunt jane's grandfather to entertain william jennings bryan was appealing. i wrote more about it at Jorjah-B if you are interested.

we had such a nice time visiting with aunt jane. i had met her twice before. but both times, i did not have a lot of opportunity to get to know her. so today was nice. boy, has this woman got spunk. i can only hope to be in her physical and mental condition when i am her age. it really was good to see her. she told us stories from her youth, and we caught up on everything in our lives as of recent. after loading up the car with several boxes of china, we said goodbye to aunt jane. i look forward to returning, as she has invited us again when the weather turns warmer.

all of this led up to the last part of the day—not the best part, but the best way to end it. since aunt jane lives in lake forest {right on lake michigan}, i was hoping to get over to the lake to take some pictures. i had worked for an architectural firm for over a year right out of college in lake forest, so i have been to lake forest beach many times—in the summer when i could swim and tan, of course. it was one of my favorite spots to be and definitely the nicest beach in all of chicagoland. this is where i had my favorite birthday party yet—when i turned 25. but i had not been there in years, so i wanted to drive over and see it as long as we were so close.

i knew it would be pretty in the winter with the snow. but i had no idea it would be quite so beautiful today. the water was the most beautiful shade of blue. and the gray skies made everything so soft with such a somber mood, but in a good way. it went with my pensive mood and it actually comforted me. as one approaches the lake from the road, they are up high on an almost bluff-like hill that looks out over the vast water. it is quite pretty. then, to get closer, you have to drive down a winding hill that takes you to a look out area much closer to the lake—where the beach sand is. only today, there was no sand to be found—only snow and lots of it. it was breathtaking.

when i got out of the car to take pictures, all i noticed was the most calming quiet—so different than the summer sounds of waves and beach goers all around. it wasn't just quieter than summer. it was void of any sound. it was almost eerie, but beautiful more than anything.

i trekked through the snow, sometimes in spots that were up past my knees. i was wearing my new boots that i got for christmas, but i did not care. i had to get closer. i had to get some pictures. i know my pictures don't do it justice, but you can take my word for it that it was one beautiful winter scene. and it was so peaceful—something i needed to sense today.

i forget to go to the beach in the winter, as it seems more like a summer thing to do. but after today, i will make more of a point of it. and next time i will plan for a very long walk along it. and i will listen. i'll hear nothing. but i will listen to the silence and enjoy the peace.

i hope you might find some peace yourself in the pictures i've posted.











11 comments:

Ida said...

These shots are AMAZING!! I love the ice and the colors and the sky :)

Claire said...

you drew me right into your sadness. i could feel the melancholy and then the hope followed.

Peter Tschirhart said...

I really like these photos, my favourite one is the is the first in the line up, it has a strange end of the earth feel. It really appeals to the sailor in me. It makes me want to cast off and see whats out there. The ice bridges that you shot are especially intriguing.

Char said...

Oh Georgia....hearing this made me identify so much with you. I know about not being able to conceive. I will continue to pray for you and add this to my prayers. I didn't know that before. Now...finding that special place of solitude where God can speak to your heart. That is wonderful. These shots are staggering in their beauty...so much wonderfulness and it's so wonderful so see God's handiwork.

Don't put down your skills - you are gifted and these shots just demostrate it more.

Char said...

Oh Georgia....hearing this made me identify so much with you. I know about not being able to conceive. I will continue to pray for you and add this to my prayers. I didn't know that before. Now...finding that special place of solitude where God can speak to your heart. That is wonderful. These shots are staggering in their beauty...so much wonderfulness and it's so wonderful so see God's handiwork.

Don't put down your skills - you are gifted and these shots just demostrate it more.

Jamie said...

Breathtaking! My goodness what a great discovery. I haven't seen snow on the beach since I was a little girl living in Alaska and I certainly don't remember it as beautiful as these pictures. I bet you could get a lot of thinking done in a place like that.

It sounds like you had an emotion packed day. What a blessing to end the day in such a beautiful space where you can just - BE...feel...reflect...experience...the quiet side of nature that makes for beautiful pictures.

ELK said...

stunning series of photos...

the loss you feel intertwined means something...keep your faith strong as I can tell it is

Chris said...

Wow, what a journey. Isn't it funny how we tend to approach creativity (especially photography) in such a roundabout way? I rarely grab my camera with an intended purpose in mind, unless there's some special project I want to do. It's always by happenstance. And I think those images are sometimes the best ones. Yours are incredible and speak volumes.

nadia said...

beautiful!

Ms Unreliable said...

Amongst the grey clouds is the silver lining, somewhere, just waiting to be found. Sometimes it takes a little longer to appear, but your gorgeous photos prove that it's definitely worth the wait.

Jane said...

Loved being with you on your journey to the lake . . . and beyond. Thank you for sharing your pain. I will pray for you.