Lake Reflections: The Greatest Guy on the Lake
By Shelley Hepler
Our family friend, Kenny, was the most interesting, fun man I knew as a kid. Our lake cabin was next door to his. Kenny was a guitar picking country western singer, comedic story teller, and a hot-shot water skier. He was a man who knew how to have a good time. I loved being at the lake when he was there.
Kenny coaching and encouraging me
Even with old school wooden skis and life belts (yes, this was pre-ski vest era), Kenny cut a fine figure behind a boat. He was a grand slalom skier, high rooster tail and all. Yet, he was patient with us beginners. He coached me as I tried over and over again. Finally, he got the idea to sit my hind end in an inner tube. That way I was already half out of the water. Yep, this time when I said "hit it!" I actually got up. Kenny was pretty excited. And, so was I.
Yay! I did it! Thanks, Kenny
Sometimes he would drive his Amphicar to the cabin. That car was awesome; it was an amphibious boat car. Wow! Did Kenny ever create a sensation when he drove off the beach into the lake. I felt so cool when he took me for a ride. I sat in one of the seats and waived at boats as we “drove” by. Kenny usually wore a big cheesy grin and honked the silly horn. Most kids would be mortified at this adult behavior. But, because it was Kenny it was alright. What a kick.
Kenny definitely was the cool guy on the lake!
Evening entertainment was a full agenda of "Kenny." We either gathered around an outdoor fire or packed ourselves like sardines in his cabin. He pulled out his guitar and sang old western songs, a few I suspect he wrote himself. He yodeled and crooned; we all laughed and sang along. At the height of hilarity, he began to tell stories of his life as a boy. He was a wondrous story teller; each tale had a lesson couched in the reminiscence.
When my siblings and I recall memories of Kenny, we laugh and shake our heads at his funny stories and goofy songs. As a young girl I just thought Kenny was a great guy who all of us loved. As I look back, I realize he gave us a wonderful gift: adult friendship and acceptance.
Remembering times at the lake with Kenny are indeed charming memories of fun and sun, as well as love from the greatest guy on the lake.
Bleu Cheese and Walnut Wafers
A cookie that's savory, not sweet. These rich tidbits are perfect with cocktails. You can bake the wafers ahead of time and store them in an airtight container.
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