You’ve heard about events being rained out. Well, I was rained out a country. The weather pendulum swung back to cold and wet. I awoke to find low hanging clouds and pouring rain outside the window. I guess I should be pleased to have had one day of sunshine.
Ladies promenading their Easter finery along Lake Annecy--and other lakes--will be forced to wear a rain coat and carry an umbrella. What might have been a pleasant long weekend will be filled with moaning about the weather. The only happy campers will be those having planned a ski trip. Fresh snow has fallen on the higher altitudes.
I--who have no desire to ski--fall into the moaning category, which will do as soon as return home...where snow is forecast.
The fool on the hill above Lake Annecy sees the sun going down, as well as the last light of the day on surrounding mountains...
I grew up with Disneyland. I recall watching Wonderful World of Disney every Sunday night, when Walt would present at the end of each program bits about his new magic kingdom emerging from orange groves south of Los Angeles. A key feature was always Tinkerbell and the castle, which have come represent Disney.
The view above is from friend’s house on the shore of Lake Annecy. I do not recall the name of the castle, but it is reputably the source of inspiration for Disney’s castle, now a key feature of all Disney parks and programming. Walt allegedly spotted this on a trip from nearby Geneva.
I say allegedly, because Germans claim that inspiration came from Neuschwanstein. I do not think that anyone cares or even thinks about the source of inspiration...except people that want bragging rights.
I managed to remain standing and to talk for over three hours. Not being one of many spoken words, that is more than I achieved in several years. Most of the audience managed to stay awake and some even asked intelligent questions, which suggested interest and understanding. Gazing at the faces of these eager young students, I was reminded of how fortunate I am to have no responsibilities to face in some office, to have school behind me, and to not be faced with the need to find a job.
The best part of the day turned out to be the weather. Blue sky and sunshine greeted us upon leaving the conference center. Snow-capped mountains rose from the lake to provide a spectacular background.
The first crocuses decorated the park beside the lake in Annecy. Trees might still be bare, but there are enough hints to provide hope of Spring. The temperature remained cool and a wind occasionally reminded one of the actual season and the weather being dominated by a high pressure system to the north funnel Arctic air into central Europe. A walk beside the lake in the warm sun helped to erase thoughts of recent unpleasant weather. The trimmed plane trees stand ready to grow a new crown and shade the promenade beside the lake.
My first thought was about how awkward these trees look, but the sight of an untrimmed revealed the look of a hirsute hobo in bad need of attention.
All lakeside properties are ringed by walls and/or hedges. All have been growing for many years, so provide a decorative touch to the town. A pleasant surprise was to find a flowering bush, announcing impending Spring, mixed in an otherwise boring hedgerow. In Summer, when the buds have faded and the green leaves blend in with the rest of the hedge, summer visitors to the lake will not know how special this small bit was for a short time.
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.