Field of Dreams Tour - Visiting with the Barnards
Warning:The following entry may be deathly boring if you aren't family!
Today was another day for family - a reunion at Camp Hiawatha with Bill and Jean Baranard and their offspring. Jean is the oldest of the four Ackerley girls (Cherie's mom, Merle, is the second youngest - Elaine, who we visited in Pennsylvania, is the youngest) - 89 years young. She and her husband Bill live near Middlebury, Vermont and gathered all five of their kids at Camp Hiawatha for the afternoon. Bill Jr., the eldest and his wife Sue now have title to the long cherished family camp and they put a good spread for us and welcomed us warmly.
Bill Jr and Sue live in Vermont (near Montpelier) as does daughter Cheryl (Orwell) and son Jim (Middlebury). Daughter Brenda is living near Ashville, North Carolina and Nancy lives near Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Nancy was accompanied by her husband Dave and one of their sons, Brian, who brought his girlfiend Mel. Brenda came with her daugher Brendyl, Brendyl's husband Brian and their four-month old son, Noah.
Bill Jr. is a professor of Ornithology up at Norwich University and quickly bonded with Zack, who loves animals and nature. Bill helped Zack identify eleven different kinds of birds before the two of them started attracting chipmunks to eat sunflower seeds out of their hands. Budding biologist Zack offered the observation that the little chippies have four toes on their front feet, five on the rear.
After lunch, a small subset of the gathering go for a toodle around the lake in Bill and Sue's ski boat, while the others lounge at the "Indian Council", a nice shelf on the slope where one can really enjoy the view of the lake. Down on the dock, Aunt Jean spontaneously decides its time for a dip, and the great-grandmother doffs her trousers and runs off the end of the dock and dives in (pretty admirable form on that dive for someone approaching ninety years on the planet). In turn, Jean is joined by her daughters Brenda and Nancy who also dive in with their clothes on. I will spare them the forced public intimacy of posting the pictures on the web!
Zoe lost no time donning her sunsuit and running off the end of the dock with her noodle. She also absconded with Zack's playmate, Bill Jr. with whom she had great fun in the water. It did take awhile to Zack to exhaust his interest in woodpeckers and chipmunks, but he eventually joined us in the lake, providing this classic image of summer.