Reading a Book Beside the Lake

The story behind the picture.

As I was going through my pictures to find one that would work as an online poster, I came across this one of my daughter Danielle, taken many years ago while we were out camping as a family.

good bookIt was our first year in the Okanagan Valley of British Columbia. We decided to go up into the hills to go camping as a family one weekend and decided on a little walk-in lake called High Lake up the Oyama Lake Road.

Since we were now living in the warm, sunny Valley, we took our usual warm weather camping gear, notably our light summer sleeping bags. But we quickly discovered that once you went up into the hills, you were no longer in the Valley (duh!) and in fact were now in an entirely different climate. A 3000+ foot elevation gain will do that…

As a result, when the sun set it cooled off quickly. And it got cold; not merely Okanagan Valley cold (room temperature or so at night in the summer) but sub-alpine cold, near or below freezing. It was a rather chilly night of fitful sleep for us all.

I got the fire going quickly in the morning, and as we warmed up and the sun rose, the mist quickly dissipating from the lake’s surface, our obsessive reader in the family started reading. The picture I used in the poster is actually one of several which show her strolling back and forth along the small “beach” reading her book like she was at home on the couch, lost in whatever world was rising up off the pages.

This is one of my favorite pictures of her since it captures so much of who she is- independent, an odd mix of girly-girl and tomboy, and of course a reader. As a child she would read so quickly that we initially weren’t sure whether she was actually reading. She often had the maximum of 100 books checked out of the local library, returning a bag or two per day in the summer. One time our son believed she was pretending to read at a high speed, spending just a few seconds on each page, so he took her book and asked her to tell what she had just read; and she did so with ease.

Danielle just celebrated her first anniversary with Scott. We are hoping, among other things, that she will pass on her love of books to any children that come along.

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