5 As Summer Ends byTerry Robinson He first met her fifty years ago, and she captured his heart. Now at the end of a busy tourist season, with kids heading back to school, once again it is just the two of them. The large boats are mostly gone, replaced by retirees and empty nesters. As he quietly slips a kayak into her waters, he feels young again. Not much has changed at Priest Lake over the years; the view of the forested hillsides across the lake, the cabins and even some of the boats. It’s now as it has always been. Many of the neighboring cabins have been in the same families for generations, like his. A few strokes of the paddle and he glides effortlessly to the blue-green line marking the beginning of deep water. Unknown depths and darkness lie to the left and the familiar sandy-bottomed shallow water to the right. School has started, and he has the lake to himself. It’s a calm, sunny, windless day. Water is so still that it takes the form of a mirror reflecting the blue sky, mountains and trees - and him. He heads north, slowly without purpose, taking great care to remain on the line between dark blue and light green. To the right, fish dart along the sandy bottom, to the left darkness. This is a time to think and reflect. He moved away many years ago and only recently returned. He had thought he was unique that way, but has learned most of his classmates left as well. Some stayed, but many pursued their dreams in distant places. He came back partly because of a feeling this is where he belonged. He realizes now this is where his heart is. Paddling aimlessly northward along the blue-green line he thinks of how peaceful it feels to swim in her warm waters, to sail on a breezy day, to cruise to the upper lake, to glide in a kayak and to awaken each morning by her shores. This is where he is most at peace. But for him, the lake has always been a summer place. For him it will never be home, but a home away from home. Warmer climates in the winter and perhaps the sunny Colorado Rockies have a pull on him as well. He left two daughters in Colorado which adds tension between Idaho and Colorado. Fortunately they fell in love with her too and always welcome the opportunity for a summer visit. Somehow distracted, he has veered off the line and is approaching the family beach, again. It’s time to lock up and head back to town for a few days - returning soon. He will always return soon. Lisa Peterson & Tom Horton’s Story My father-in-law Roy Peterson started coming to Priest Lake in the late 1940’s when his father, Hjalmar Peterson, built a cabin over on the Neopit Loop, a few miles south of Hill’s Resort. Hjalmar was a butcher in Spokane, and he built the cabin using only hand tools. It’s still there today. A few years back Roy passed away, and he was cremated. His wife Marjorie had passed a few years earlier and she was cremated too, so we had both of their ashes. My wife Lisa and her sister Annie (with husband Jeff) decided it would be a wonderful tribute to spread their ashes at Priest, so several summers ago on a glorious July afternoon we loaded into our boat and cruised out about a mile south of Bartoo. It was calm, sunny, in the mid-80’s, and we opened a bottle of champagne, toasted Roy and Marjorie’s memory, then slowly and carefully the girls poured both of their ashes together into the amazingly clear water. Their remains sparkled and swirled and caught the sun as they slowly descended into the deep blue. They were together forever. As we watched them go, it was hard not to feel like they were frolicking and dancing in the lake they loved. May we all be so lucky! ROCK PAINTING Sandy Dickson, Atlanta GA Owning our cabin on Priest Lake has been a great joy in our lives for 30 years, even after moving away from Spokane and on to Boise, Memphis and now Atlanta! Someone in Atlanta asked us if we had ever considered owning something closer and our response was “Never”! Over the last ten years we have had a simple activity at the cabin that all ages have enjoyed – acrylic rock painting. Neighbor kids and adults, and guests have had fun, and we have lasting memories from hours of painting. We don’t ask people to sign a guest book, we ask them to paint a rock. Even serious engineers can get enthusiastic about their rocks! Continued on page 6