[Continues from: “Different Scenery”]
© — Rolling out of the mountains, we came to…lo and behold…Clear Lake. This I was excited about! The Clear Lake. We drove north up the east side of the lake to take a good look. In a small town, we found a park right along the shore, and pulled over. (Actually, we pulled over at the A&W across the highway to get burgers and fries, and then walked across the highway to the park to eat.) I sat down at a picnic table so as to face the lake. Not exactly Lake Tahoe, but it did have lovely, green hills around it. The water lapped at the edge, and made a sound like it was asking for some fries. Seagulls came over to check us out, and looked at me in a dejected manner as I explained to them, in detail, why I didn’t feed wildlife. It seemed like a nice spot, with small collections of mobile homes painted brightly, and docks at every mobile neighborhood that the kids swam from.
And then I saw it. It was low, and a little hard to see…and it was bright green. The green island must have been 50 feet across. And then I saw another, further out. I jumped up on the picnic table to get a good look. There were dozens of floating, green islands. Just like the ones in the pond back home. Algae. Masses of it. In full bloom…sans flowers. No car fenders sticking out. No trash, except for the occasional bit of recyclable flotsam. Just people living in older, but fixed-up, mobile homes. Hmmmmm. Lots of them. All living right on the shore. And had obviously been there for a long time. Long before we figured out that the stuff we people make is actually algae fertilizer. Long before wastewater treatment plants. Long before the Algae Monster got strong enough to rule over a lake called ‘Clear.’ Well, if the folks at Tahoe can keep their lake clear, then so can the folks at Clear. If they want to. Or they could just get snowshoes, hike out over the algae islands, and take funny photos that make them look like that can walk on water. Among the bloom. I knew I should do something…and that ‘should’ part never gets very far. Doesn’t do very much, either.
(For your convenience, we offer…The Coddiwomplers Route Guide)
Copyright – Robert W. Hansen – 2017