Happy belated Father’s Day and summer solstice to all. 

To celebrate Father’s Day this past Sunday, our family borrowed a red canoe from a friend, launching it under a blindingly blue sky into the flat, still waters of Cape Pogue Bay. 

Our two-and-a-half-year-old daughter crouched in her life jacket by my feet on the gently rocking floor of the canoe. Occasionally, she lifted her “fishing pole” (a kid-sized net we found washed up on the shore) up over the edge of the boat, letting it drag through the water in hopes of catching something. 

As we paddled, we peered up at the many ospreys flying overhead, calling to each other, several with fish clutched in their talons. We watched as a snake danced its way across the water, interrupted in a flash by an underwater predator who attempted, and failed, to pull it under and have it for dinner. 

Across the bay, countless cars zipped up and down the beach on the Trustees trails to Cape Pogue. Pop-up tents dotted the shore as beachgoers set up camp from the back of their trucks and SUVs. Seeking solitude, we made our way to a little-known spot where the shallow waters provided a safe harbor to our bold and fearless daughter. 

Juna, naked and covered in a thick, white layer of sunscreen, waded out, seeking the “deep end” as she peered at shells and seaweed on the sandy bottom. A picnic lunch, followed by a warm nap under the umbrella and we were all ready to head home, loading up the canoe with sandy towels and wet bathing suits for the paddle back. 

Our home is a shady haven to return to. The large copper beech, planted 30 years ago by the woman who built our house, casts a deep shadow under purple leaves. Juna visits this tree often; she pretends the branches are horses, long manes and tails dancing in the breeze. 

The pup comes out to greet us, followed by the chickens and ducks. One hen recently hatched out two chicks and a duckling after we slid a duck egg underneath her while she was broody. She is a good mama, spreading her wings to protect her babies at the slightest sign of danger and not seeming to mind that one of them looks nothing like herself and is two times bigger than the others. A kitten will be arriving at our homestead in the next few weeks, one of a litter born to a barn cat at a friend’s farm. 

We are beyond lucky to call this place home. 

At the Chappy Community Center, the 2020 summer programs are kicking off early. For details and the latest information please visit their website, chappycommunitycenter.org. The CCC is now offering private tennis and sailing lessons (420 and Sunfish) and has a new pickleball court. Yoga will begin on June 28, every Sunday and Wednesday. The CCC will be dishing up ice cream via a window service beginning July 8 and lobster rolls will start July 15. 

An Art Stroll is planned for July 24. The WiFi is currently on, and the porch is swept free of pollen. 

The CCC is also hosting a Tick Talk via Zoom on June 27. Island biologist Richard Johnson, along with Sam Telford 3rd, director of Tufts New England Regional Biosafety Lab will present important data as well as community solutions to help protect you and your loved ones. Chappy resident, Alan Feldman, will be moderating. This Zoom session, brought to you by the CIA Environmental Committee and the CCC, will begin promptly at 9 a.m. on Saturday, June 27. If you have any questions please email chappycc@verizon.net or call Pam Stenson at 617-842-0807. 

At Slip Away Farm this Saturday, we will be having a bake sale of chocolate chip and molasses cookies made by my brother, Christian Walter, and his friend Courcelle Stark. One hundred per cent of sales will be donated to the Movement for Black Lives and the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund. Slip Away will match all sales with an equal donation. Packs of 2 cookies will be four dollars each. You can pre-order the chocolate chip cookies (and some produce items) on our website, slipawayfarm.com or you are welcome to stop by the stand anytime between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Saturday.