Kilarney bay road - a small dirt path that hugs the bay of a quiet lake. Water filled potholes reflect light from a calming storm. Thunder rumbles in the far distance, the trees drip.
Riding bikes with the older kids. Crush a pop can and stick it on the tire of you bike to ride a motorcycle.
James races down the lane way, crashing into the Balsam Lake like breaking glass.
We get towed behind a run-down boat named Lucky Ducks. No one is wearing shoes.
Hours spent on a surfboard, with no waves.
Sarah opened her freezee on a counter that had chemicals on it - we had to call poison control. Erik’s friend had a potato launcher.
Tyler and Adam box with water wings
Adam decks you in the face with a water wing. The stars illuminate the sky as we listen to loons.
Uncle Drew and Susan are towing James behind the boat. I really miss Uncle Drew. Admiring the changing landscape ahead, no one would have guessed James crashed into the open water miles behind. His head was a tiny dot in the horizon, bobbing around like a duck. Upon arrival was a gruesome scene, the waterski connected with his forehead – surely a gash worthy of stitches.
Mark was the oldest of the kids on the dirt road and boasted the best fire pit for everyone to gather around. His family always had multiple dogs that were lingering around the heat. In the beginning, the fires purpose was to take refuge from the adults.
An older Goulet roams around the gathering of people looking for scraps
Slowly the more we grew; the fire pit became a place everyone would naturally walk to as the sun descended.
Finn asks for a picture during a costume themed party on the long weekend.
Finn going for the worm - long weekend gathering
Jeff having a blast taking anyone willing for rides on his Hobiecat
Matt Rowe climbs the hull after crashing the boat on a windy day on Balsam lake
Everyone loved Jeff for playing music around the fire. Jeff especially loved it when Matt Rowe was around, to enthusiastically find chords and lyrics off his phone to keep the the good times rolling.
Growing up over the years there has been one thing that has always stayed constant – fire. The interesting part about a flame is that it is unpredictable, yet always much the same.
Meghan, Kath and Jeff at the routine fire
Dan and Darcy sit atop Marks back cabin and watch the fire from above
This is Mark Arnett - his family was the cottage next to ours. Some might call Mark the fire master - every night in the summer Mark hosted and tended to the fire which brought everyone out like moths to a flame once the sun had set. Marks positive energy and spontenuity made everyone want to be around him at his back cabin to drink and not think about tomorrow.
Year’s worth of stories and experiences unfolded in one spot of grass in front of a flame. The older we grow the more unpredictable life becomes – but the flame is frozen in time, from when we were young.
As the nights dragged on many would end up in a haze in the back cabin couches - talking about practically anything before stumbling home to a bed or couch.
Mark holds up and shows a poster made as kids that was dug up from a neighbor's cottage from down the street.