All Summer Long

It was 1989
My thoughts were short my hair was long
Caught somewhere between a boy and man
She was seventeen
And she was far from in-between
It was summertime in Northern Michigan

Splashing through the sand bar
Talking by the campfire
It’s the simple things in life, like when and where
We didn’t have no Internet
But, man, I never will forget
The way the moonlight shined upon her hair

And we were trying different things
We were smoking funny things
Making love out by the lake to our favorite song
Sipping whiskey out the bottle
Not thinking ’bout tomorrow
Singing Sweet home Alabama all summer long

Singing Sweet home Alabama all summer long

Catching Walleye from the dock
Watching the waves roll off the rocks
She’ll forever hold a spot inside my soul
We’d blister in the sun
We couldn’t wait for night to come
To hit that sand and play some rock and roll

While we were trying different things
And we were smoking funny things
Making love out by the lake to our favorite song
Sipping whiskey out the bottle
Not thinking ’bout tomorrow
Singing Sweet Home Alabama all summer long

Singing Sweet Home Alabama all summer long

Sweet Home Alabama
Turn it up

Now nothing seems as strange
As when the leaves began to change
Or how we thought those days would never end
Sometimes I hear that song
And I start to sing along
And think, man, I’d love to see that girl again

Man, I’d like to see that girl again

And we were trying different things
And we were smoking funny things
Making love out by the lake to our favorite song
Sipping whiskey out the bottle
Not thinking ’bout tomorrow
Singing Sweet Home Alabama all summer long

We were trying different things
And we were smoking funny things
Making love out by the lake to our favorite song
Sipping whiskey out the bottle
Not thinking ’bout tomorrow
Singing Sweet Home Alabama all summer long

Singing Sweet Home Alabama all summer long
Singing Sweet Home Alabama all summer long
Singing Sweet Home Alabama all summer long
Singing Sweet Home Alabama all summer long

Singing Home Sweet Home Alabama all summer long
Singing all summer long

All Summer Long – Kid Rock

Another spring is upon me, another summer approaches. I made a promise to myself some time ago to never let another summer go by without spending more time doing what I love instead of just working. I asked myself…“How many more summers do you have?” I don’t know the answer to that but I know the number is shorter than the summers that have passed. It’s time to get it right.

Camping in western Maine with Vinny

The road to my personal redemption began years ago when I walked away from all the people I called friends and gave up the heavy drug use that was leading me down the path of endless pain. Fear and paranoia overcame my freewill while pushing me deeper into self loathing. A bad combination if you want to live. Lucky for me I saw the light before it was too late, and also lucky for me I had a great friend to be there for me.

My best friend Vinny, the little dog who played a big part in my recovery, saw me through the worst time in my life. He was there as I broke down after stopping the ever downward spiral my life had become. He never judged me, just sat by my side as I shook. That little dog meant the world to me, and I miss him like he was my son. Yes he was just a dog, but he was just what I needed at the time.

Vinny loved being in the woods

In his last years I took him camping with me several times. He just loved the woods as much as I did and loved exploring all the streams and paths. His zest for life was a buoy of sorts, a lesson not lost on me as I watched his vision and mobility fail. Through it all he still looked at me the same, still happily sat in my lap for hours. I can’t help but tear up as I write this. In his own way he saved me.

Blind and unable to walk, this was Vinny on his last day of life

I’m a fiercely independent person, I don’t want to owe anything to anyone. I work hard and do my part to see those I care for are safe to the best of my ability, including my new best friend Brandy. She does not replace Vinny, she’s just the next dog I will save and and be saved by.

Brandy the goofball!

This summer I will not hesitate to spend as much time as possible outdoors. I am planning a short camping trip of sorts the first week in May if all goes well and this will be Brandy’s first. It may only be a field behind a friends house but it’s still sleeping in a tent! My focus this first trip is to get organized and ready for longer trips into the deep woods up north.

On top of Blackcat Mountain with Vinny

I also think back to summers of my youth. Many nights spent on Blackcat Mountain and even a winter camping trip to Tumbledown Mountain also here in Maine. I was 19 then and a girl named April came with me on that trip. The adventure we had, the broken down Jeep and the walk out to find help, that moment is forever burned into my memory as one of the best times of my life. 34 years later and I can still smell her hair, remember the sound of her voice.

But now it’s time for new adventures with new friends. Many trips this summer will bring back that feeling of independence and self assurance so necessary to a wealthy soul. A re-kindling of my inner spirit lost to the passing of time, yet waiting just under the surface for a steady hand and a clear mind. No more funny things to smoke, maybe just a little whiskey out the bottle!

10 thoughts on “All Summer Long

  1. Every time I hear that song, I wish I wasn’t such an asshole when I was 17. There are things in life that are best when shared. Right now, I am so far from the independence I want, and it’s my own fault for not seeing certain things ahead of time, and just going for the NOW!. Maybe teaching Brandy the things that were special to Vinny could be a great piece of therapy?

    Like

  2. How I wish you were closer. That we could camp together, smell that pristine night air and share conversations deep into the night. Together with our goofy four legged companions, Brandy and Harry. Where would we be without them. Enjoy your upcoming adventures my friend. I’ll be there with you in spirit.

    Like

    1. I still have my ultimate dream floating in my mind, I still see my goal of traveling by boat. Perhaps I will make it to the shores of Australia someday and we can camp on my boat. I am a strong willed person and if I can make it happen I will be there.

      Like

  3. Still love your writing and pictures and wish we could see and hear more. You sound good and I miss that voice. Hope you and Brandy are great and Maine is warming up for the camping season- Chad

    Like

  4. You know if you get to Cal before November you can come sailing with us or. you could take that badass Jeep of yours down Baja and meet us there next year- right? We still have red wine and red meat!

    Like

    1. I’m sitting in Louisiana right now at a truck stop eating a ribeye! I sure wish I could come along on you maiden voyage but it’s not to be. But I will tell you friend, I have not given up my dream, I just need to focus on work and save, save, save for the “right” boat to lead me to my goals. I will not give up!

      Like

Leave a Reply to Weird Guy With The Dog Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s