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Well, my last foray into the “blog world” was back in February, when the ice was still hanging from the trees. That is not the case these days – the blackberries are beginning to ripen and the cicadas are singing their daytime chorus, so summer must be here. And after last winter’s grip hold, it’s not a moment too soon.

As for me, summer is my favorite season. Wait – that last statement may be a little rash since, truth be told, ALL of the seasons are my favorites, just in different ways.

I have previously on this blog admitted to my addiction to the water. Yes, I am an Aquaholic but no, I do not consider myself sick, and you won’t find me at an AA meeting. I believe my addiction actually keeps me sane, although my spouse might argue that point. I have many summertime water-related passions, but perhaps my most beloved is slalom water skiing. The thrill of carving up flat-glass water and “pushing the envelope” is what heaven must be like. However, unlike kayaking, cliff diving, canoeing or many of my other favorite pursuits, water skiing has one flaw. And you wonder what that might be? Well, to borrow a phrase from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, “it’s elementary, my dear Watson!” Water skiing requires an additional participant to drive the boat! And that’s the problem.

There have been countless summer days when I have stared out onto the calm green water with only my faithful companion Mud at my side. So, I decided to express my thoughts in a poem:

Skier’s Lament
I sit and stare at the calm green water, wishing for a ride.
Oh, how I wish that Mud could drive!
But alas I can only skim the wake in my dreams
For today is what it seems,
The Monkey is on my back – and that I cannot deny
And probably will be to the day I die!
Oh, how I wish that Mud could drive!

Captain mud aquascape

Captain Mud

I have given up trying to teach Mud how to drive the boat. He gave it his best shot, but I guess it is just not in his genes. I have thought about taking up wake boarding. They have places with machines that can drag you around until your arms fall off. I’ll have to give that some thought, but in the meantime, “I sit and stare.”

I have one final confession to make. For the last 16 years, my literary skills would have been nothing without the aid of one person. Her name is Angie Cassady Wallace. In fact, her talents have not just enhanced my literary handiwork; she has also worked behind the scenes to help Aquascape Environmental in so, so many ways. She developed our website, created our promotional materials, and made many other contributions, all to benefit the good ship “Aquascape Environmental.” It is with great sadness, but also much pride, that I announce that Angie will be leaving the Aquascape crew to take on a new challenge as the Executive Director of the Atlanta Cancer Care Foundation. We will certainly miss her! And to take a line from Jack Nicholson in As Good As It Gets: You made Aquascape Environmental a better place and me a better man – well, at least a better writer!

It’s summertime – go out and hit the water!
Until next time.


Jim Lanier is President of Aquascape Environmental. He’s succumbed to the lure of creeks, lakes, streams, rivers, wetlands and oceans all of his life. You can read all of his musings here.