A few days ago, I announced to Marie that early the next morning, I was going to take her on a mystery painting mission. After packing the car with my Open Box M
, other painting supplies, cold water, and snacks, we headed out shortly after 6 a.m. Passing one of our favorite spots, Rock Spring
on the Natchez Trace Parkway
, she began to wonder what our destination was. Crossing the Tennessee River near the Colbert Ferry, she became even more curious. We turned toward Buzzard Roost Springs and then toward Iuka, Mississippi
, on Highway 72. After crossing Big Bear Creek, we traveled onto County Road 172. Soon she learned that our intended destination was Eastport Beach on the banks of Pickwick Lake
. We agreed that this is a painter's paradise with all of the patterns of light and shadows of its clapboard cottages, boathouses, and fishing boats on the water. White yucca plants lined the two-lane road leading to Gilligan's Restaurant and Grill. Cypress trees reflected in the water. The beautiful vistas of Pickwick Lake were breathtaking. Scenes along the bank reminded us of those we have seen on the coast of Maine. A flock of Canadian geese glided by on the water.
We soon settled on painting a pretty little cottage near the water. Two young girls, with their Mason fruit jars of cherry KoolAid, were fishing with their grandfather. They watched me paint until they puttered away in their aluminum boat to catch a kettle of brim. Then the only sounds we heard were the pecking of a woodpecker in the tree overhead and the occasional cooing of a dove. Our mystery painting mission turned out to be a fun adventure for both of us.