Osoyoos owns a piece of my heart. While it has never been my home, it is the only place, that is, the only physical location that brings with it a sense of home. There has not been a summer since I was born that wasn’t spent, at least in some small part, on (and in) the lake. I grew relationships with family, met life long friends, learned to waterski, had my first job, experienced my first kiss and met my husband along side this lake. I grew up here. It holds a place in my heart that I can’t quite describe. It isn’t just a place that I have come to love, but a place that has become part of me. It owns me a little bit. There is a magic it had that cannot be described.
This year has been one of extraordinary adventures. From the Berlin Wall to Auschwitz to the Alps; from the Mosel through Paris and into Holland – we have been blessed to see so much of the world. So coming home I thought that Osoyoos would somehow feel, i don’t know, smaller. Less magical. But it wasn’t. Not even close.
Coming home and ending my summer in Osoyoos gave me the opportunity to reflect. To sit quietly. To write. To watch the clouds shift, and willow tree sway. To watch my husband play with my nephews in the water, to experience the perfect refresh of diving into the middle of the lake on a hot afternoon, and to curl up with a book and read for hours on end, because there was no where else to be. And each of these moments is perfect on its own. But then the sun disappears just slightly behind the mountains to the North West. And that is where the beauty is.
There is something ethereal about the moments following sunset until the light disappears for the night. The in between. No longer day, not yet night. It gets real quiet. The boats go away, and dishes are done, and the kids ready for bed. The birds on the lake settle in for the night, and every once and a while you hear the splash of a fish or see a turtle head pop out from beneath the mirrored surface on the lake. The air starts to cool and there is sudden relief from the hot day that is past. Curled up in my comfiest clothes, I lie into a chair or on a tube and stair up into the sky and watch the sky change. First the clouds, and then the colours. Every night it is different. Always a surprise. And I’m never less amazed. And in this quiet, cool moment, rich in pinks and purples and blues that don’t feel real, I get to be alone with my thoughts. The world fades away and for one hour I get to connect with nature. And with myself. I am calm and quiet and my mind is clearer than it is at any other time and in any other place in the world. I write. I write frantically sometimes, afraid if I don’t get all my ideas down in that instant they will be swallowed up by the busy days ahead. And when I’m done I just sit. And breathe. Sometimes I close my eyes and listen to the wind. I take in a slow breath. I inhale, smelling the freshly cut grass and sunscreen remnants mixing with the dampness forming in the air. And it’s perfect. For almost an hour every night, the world is perfect.
In my travels, through cities and food and art and culture and people and history, I have seen and experienced so much. But none can fully compare to the experience of twilight. So that is my goal. To travel to new places and to soak in twilight. To sit still and experience it without rushing through it. Without running from a museum, hunting for a meal or catching the metro. I want to sit for 1 hour through twilight everywhere I can and hear, and smell, and see the experience as day passes to night. Because there is nothing like it.