Advanced cottage mooching

Jessica’s tips are very nice for the novice, but when you feel you’re ready to take your lakeside freeloading up a notch:

  1. Leave electronic devices, including your kids’, at home or at least in the car.
  2. Sole exception to #1, bring along Radica 20Q, good for deck or dock.
  3. Pack “Peterson Field Guild to Birds of North America.” Don’t hog it.
  4. Also, “Insects of the North Woods.” If you want to hog it, that won’t be a problem.
  5. Rise first and put on excellent coffee, which you brought along, to brew.
  6. It’s just coffee—no need to brag about it.
  7. If a loon calls after dark, claim to any children present that you are able to interpret its meaning, which is a lament for a lone canoeist who drowned many years ago on this very lake.
  8. Nap.
  9. If you know how, play cribbage. There’s a board somewhere.
  10. On leaving, forget your copy of “Peterson” on the mantle beside the binoculars.