As the boat rocks back and forth, I can hear the water droplets lapping at the edge of the dock. I am lulled by the steady rhythm of the rippling waves and the warm, gentle breeze. Across the horizon, the sun creeps up slyly from behind the clouds. Its rays cause the water to glisten and gleam. The water is iridescent and smooth like glass. I reach out to touch the surface. Just as my fingers reach the taut layer of moisture, the tips break through causing an undulating effect. In the distance, houses line the coast. Grandiose architectural masterpieces and cozy wooden cabins sit on display for all to see, so utterly different yet connected by the large body of water they encase. The water is majestic in its vastness, a deep calming blue that seems to go on for miles. Its extent is unfathomable.
It is a perfect morning as I sit on the dock with my feet dangling over the edge. The water bites at my toes, sending a slight chill up through my body. While the world is still asleep, I alone can enjoy this moment of peaceful bliss. It is a simple ecstasy, a natural elation. There is no better time than these to empty one’s mind of past worries. I can just breathe in the lake’s soothing qualities. The air tastes better here at Lake Winnipesaukee.
Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire is a magnificent place to be. Its name, which means “Smile of the Great Spirit,” truly embodies the nature of this spectacular site. Every summer, I look forward to the one week when my family rents a house and a boat along the lake. We take the boat out on the water when the sun first peaks its head above the skyline and the air is still calm. With a full tank of gas, we can go anywhere and do anything. My dad steers as I put on my water skis and hold tightly to the rope. Once I am up on the water, I cruise in and out of the wake with silent determination. The lake makes me feel as if I am fearless. I laugh when I hit an unexpected jolt that sends me tumbling face first into the mirrored surface of the lake. The water is cool and refreshing. When I get tired, I climb into the boat to rest my sore limbs. The sun dries my skin one droplet at a time. There truly is nothing better than gliding around the coast with the wind blowing my hair. At lunchtime, we dock the boat and grab a bite to eat: fresh fruit, cheese and crackers, sandwiches, and chips. There is good company and better conversation. Then, as we ride home, we can enjoy the natural landscape that truly embodies New England’s charm. There is no place more awe-inspiring in its innate beauty than Lake Winnipesaukee.
Story by Claire Schmidt