A billowing pile of smoke was rising from the fire we had lit inside the antique wood-burning fireplace that was housed inside the authentic, hand-made old-fashioned log cabin we rented in South Lake Tahoe through Airbnb. I could feel my eyes begin to water as the white indoor clouds reached the vaulted, lodge-pole daring ceilings upstairs.
“Maybe we should open up a window?” My friend was attempting to stifle the smoke in the fireplace after trying to circulate the heat from the flames around the living room.
“Yeah, maybe that’s best,” I coughed. I took a quick look upstairs to possibly open up another window. I couldn’t tell at first if we had killed our other friend, who has asthma and was lying in a bed upstairs until I heard the sounds of snoring from underneath the comforter return to their normal steady rhythm. (more…)
The bright yellow mass is carried to the edge of the shore. Together, we drop the two-person kayak into the water and push it further into the bay. My sister and I guide the vessel past the small tides letting our bare feet leave the hot sand and follow it into the cold water. We manage to hop in our seats—me in the front, and my sister in the back. The long double-sided paddles that lay in the watercraft on each of its sides are picked up and held in our hands to steer us beyond the beach.
The sun continues to beam its bright and very hot waves down directly over our heads, but after several minutes of paddling hard against the oncoming current, we manage to meet up with the other kayak that held our friends. (more…)