The lake is roughly 99 miles long, and much like a black hole you can’t decipher the beginning or the end. Set back into the mossy bank is a large house. It’s fresh white exterior is accented by graceful curves of balconies where one can gaze out over the glassy turquoise water. It is known as Lake Okenagen, in Canada.
A smooth rainbow of pastel rocks merges with algae as water meets the choppy shoreline. It smells crisp and fresh, the odor of water wafting across towering trees. Throughout the area, wildlife is abundant, it is a natural habitat providing solace for animals. A solitary beaver, coat glossy and chocolate brown, wades through the cool shallows towards his refuge from the sweltering heat. A majestic Blue Heron perches upon a slick rock, one thoughtful eye trained upon the shore, its lengthly neck craned in sheer excellence.
A dock juts out across the crystal clear blue and green hues of the water. Attached are two powerful jet-ski’s, smooth wake boards, and a boat. This boat is the focus of my independent afternoon. Being the only one in a hulking boat built for about twelve, adds to the peaceful serenity of my emotions. Dashing down the blurring coast, it feels as though I’m growing wings and about to fly. I’m addicted to the salty taste of the frigid droplets spraying against my face, temporarily blinding me of my surroundings. I find myself in the middle of the lake, nobody around, save some deer on the shore and the summer lake house in the distance. Faint sounds of a dog barking is the only noise that reaches my ears. Terror would have gripped my heart in that moment, but it is now a fleeting thought, my mind is vacant. I cut the engine, its terrifying rumble like a beast poised to strike.
Frothy waves cease to exist, and the water is still, like a pool of crystal shards waiting for life. I focus on enjoying solitude in my mind. The clear water seems to be doing a dance, building up until it peaks beside me. After a short time, I replace my hands on the soft leather wheel, and steer the boat back to the jetty.
A beautiful sunset is beginning. I watch with wide hazel eyes, sinking slowly back onto a cracked log. Vivid orange morphs with spectacular pinks and bloody reds to form a magnificent spectacle. Soon the call for dinner jars me from my magical trance. Much like family, the lake is hard to part with, but sometimes it must be done. Words seem few and far between when I try to describe the emotions I feel when gazing at the water, illuminated by the sun. The sheer beauty of life is brought back, and faith in humanity is restored.
Wispy green grass is spongy underneath my bare feet, and the whispers of bugs are content in the meadow. This property is a vision of bliss. I grasp the railing and haul my tired body up the staircase, watching the darkness slowly envelope the dock, then the shore, and finally the shadows of the house.
For the first night in Seattle, we joined my uncle, his wife, and their graduating daughter Sienna for dinner at Canlis. The first thing that we enjoyed were the small bites (amuse) that arrived before the appetizers. The first on the left was a pungent mushroom tart garnished by a delicate purple petal, it was light and sweet. Next to it was a seaweed wrap filled with salmon mousse, cream cheese, and caviar. The salmon wasn't overwhelming, so one could still enjoy the familiar creaminess of the cream cheese. Finally on the far right was my favorite, a fried sphere. The outside was crunchy, but the true surprise was on the inside. The ball was filled with a cream/egg yolk mixture that exploded in your mouth, leaving behind a warm and comforting taste.
My appetizer was the Canlis salad which had blue cheese, vinaigrette, and bacon. It was much like a Cobb salad, and I enjoyed it very much.
The main course that I chose was a filet mignon. The rare steak sat upon potatoes, carrots, and a thick squash sauce. The steak was very rich and juicy, and it was one of the best steaks I've ever had.
The next stop was the Dale Chihuly museum to gaze at magnificent glass edifices. There were things like paper thin glass vases modeled after Native American blankets. There was a giant blue "ocean" filled with little glass fish and shells. A whole room had a ceiling which was made of thousands of glass pieces, I took a minute long video walking through there. There was also a giant glass world, which reminded me of Wonderland. There were rickety wooden rowboats filled to the bursting with speckled glass balls, and a giant room swathed in glass flowers.