I feel alive when I'm on the water. The world melts into oblivion, the Human World with all it's stresses and worries and heartache, that world melts into oblivion. All that's left is the huge sky, the cicadas ("Momma Bugs" is what the kids call them because I love the sound they make) singing their song in the cattails and tree branches. The clouds pile up overhead into big cotton candy tufts, leaving their reflections on the water to glide through, the closest we'll get to touching them. The dipping of our paddles the only sound we make, and when we speak, it's in hushed tones.

The water offers a chance away from my life, a mini vacation, from . . . everything. I can't explain it, this feeling that washes over me when I'm paddling along (now, as of today, on a brand new stand up paddle board). The real me comes out and I'm tuned to every new sound, every heron passing overhead, every fish I see below the surface.

Water lets me see the world with eyes that are yearning to see and discover. Water teaches me to see, really and truly see. It's a beautiful place, this earth.