No disrespect for Wichita, Kansas, but there are better places to be at the end of July. Surely the best of them would be here on the west shore of Flathead Lake, watching the placid water under a dome of pale blue sky, the mountains a somewhat darker blue in the distance. The morning air is as smooth as a silken pillow, cool as the underside of it.
This is why those lucky enough to own a piece of the Flathead shore are mostly millionaires now. When I was a kid, we’d come to the lake all the time in summer, splashing around a place we called Sandy Beach in Somers. It’s where I taught myself to swim. Now Sandy Beach is someone’s private paradise and my rare visits to the lake depend on the hospitality of friends. That’s fine. If you lived here, you’d probably take it for granted. Or you might begin suspect ulterior motives when friends and family started dropping by in the summer months.
Some things it’s better not to own: this view, these friends, this fine morning. That’s my story, anyway, and I’m sticking to it.