We started on our Lake Hartwell hike on a sandy beach and ended up walking through beautiful, tall grasses that were filled with lots of things. Earthy things that become pocket treasures and things that end up in a small hand crafted wooden bowl at the cottage. There were also things that fit perfectly into little dog’s mouths!

Think about it: how did this little pine cone end up in the middle of Lake Hartwell? No doubt some strong northeast wind blew it there, and I let it stay right where it landed and walked on thinking about how especially rich this land really is.

Then we reached our destination for the evening. This is the covenant island in the middle of the lake. Thank goodness, it remains surrounded by water and not accessible by foot. It once was an Indian burial mound. Years ago, it was totally excavated by the University of Georgia. So even though there is nothing there, the Core of Engineers forbids normal access to the island. I’ve only been on it once and it was during a thunder storm. We ditched out kayaks and ran into the trees, and why we did that I’ll never understand. You are suppose to get out of the boat, turn it over, and  go under it for a sense of (false) protection. But not our group, we had folks with us that wanted to run straight for cover under the low hanging limbs. Yikes and double yikes!!

As we turned to head back to the car, Cocoa was able to walk with a drop lead. This means she was staying with me and not offering to bolt for the water like Chip (aka Brave Lite Feather). As I took this photo, I thought about how much I love her, how good she is, and how blessed I am to have her with me.

Less than five minutes later, she had popped something undefinable in her mouth and was crunching on it! “Ahhhhh!” I shouted while trying to do a swept of her teeth. Every peaceful thought within me vanished and was replaced by a vision of having to go to our vet Dr. Windus!

Then I looked down where we were both standing and I realized there was a feather. One feather and then two feathers, and then three! I looked at Cocoa and said, “What did you eat?!” There was panic in my voice and a doggy smile on her face.

The feathers were all around us until . . . well, you get the idea. The rest belongs in a Jack London novel! “Let’s go,” I said to her and as we turned to leave I noticed Chip fiercely pulling toward something.

Bones! Lots of bones! Bones that had fallen apart or been pulled apart. Needless to say, the dogs loved this walk. It was one of their favorites of all time.

“Cool” is the word Chip used and Cocoa just smiled. So, it is good to be home in northeast Georgia. Good to be with the people here and good to be on this land and good to be happy.

It’s just awesome in every way.

Oh, one more thing: there were these. Three perfectly dug large squares in a row in the lake bed. Mmmmmm. “Looks like . . . . Nope, I’m not going to say it! Not going to tell you!” You’ll have to buy the book when it comes out!