The first thing I’m going to do when I get back to the hotel is shower. Standing in the cleanest lake in the world. I don’t feel bad about it, I don’t feel bad about peeing in the world’s cleanest lake. It’s a volcano too. Peeing in a volcano, find me a man that wouldn’t. After swimming in a volcano we all could use showers. Lather up and wash the sin of wading in hell off.
Crater lake is a contradiction. It is the most beautiful contradiction. It’s built from destruction and harsh winters... That water, that water is god before man, it’s holy untouched.
After we passed a mysterious tree that floats vertically forever (see purgatory) Seehttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_Man_of_the_Lake, a woman asked if there were people around when the volcano last erupted. The guide responded, oh yes, though we found in the eruption they all perished. Perished is when your fruit spoils because you decided to take the 5 freeway. These people, in the name of heaven and hell became no more than fruit. They over ripened. What power. They say the volcano first erupted when it was surrounded by glaciers. I can understand that, I guess, when you have to go, you have to go. What loneliness, a volcano erupting amidst glaciers. What shame, what surprise. A coming out party?
“I’m happy to tell you all, we just fell into the top ten of America’s most dangerous volcanos! They aren’t saying ‘if’ anymore, now they’re just saying ‘when’!”
Sounds more like an engagement. Where’s the champagne? The poppers? Save the date cards? Can we save the date? We will be there! We are already perishable.
Now back in the motel the wifi is down. I want to know where are we in the top ten of most dangerous volcanos. Did Letterman do that top ten? Google is down in Crater lake, the internet is always down in the face of the real important questions.
After we pull into the docks the guide tells us Wizard Island is ours to explore. It is a volcano island, in a lake, that is in a volcano. After a quick swim in the cleanest lake in the world I headed for the peak, the cone, the crater. It is about five hundred feet wide and one hundred feet deep. Empty. No lake with another volcano in the middle. I would have killed to see a volcano inside a lake inside a volcano inside a lake inside a volcano.
History repeats. Heaven knows hell from harsh winters and destruction.
Seventeen billion gallons of water evaporates from the lake every year. Up, up, and away.
Seventeen billion gallons of water seeps down below the lake every year. Nobody knows for sure where it goes, when it goes down. If Crater lake were a card game, it seems heaven and hell push every hand. 17 up, 17 down.
While we’re waiting for the last hikers to board the boat, the captains radio starts a mile a minute. Then thunder cracks above us.
“That’s just god moving furniture.” A woman beside me tells her child.
The captain says if we have hiking sticks, don’t point them to the sky. He smiles, like he laughs, like he hopes, all just about half. Then lightning comes down.
“That’s just god taking pictures of his new furniture.” The woman adds.
The clouds are moving fast towards us, over the caldera.
“We’re in a bowl, and there’s soup coming for us.” I want to say, but I don’t.
How could that be the first thing you say to a stranger?
By the time I got back to the car, after 2.2 miles and 700 feet up and out of the Volcanic lake, I found the air in the can of lightly salted whole cashews had expanded. Surely it expanded out of fear and excitement, almost to a breaking point.
Do not worry, my cashews, I said as I snacked on them, it is only god moving furniture. Then the hot rain soup began to come down.