Annecy and the Lake

My trip to Annecy was short and sweet.

My host during my stay in Geneva (between the municipalities of Troinex and Plan-les-Ouates), a truly lovely and inspirational woman and my first cousin twice removed, drove me to Annecy for a half-day trip. We took the scenic route: rolling hills the color green all flora seems after a rain—verdure among which were nestled small, isolated collections of homes—and a medieval bridge no longer used, white and unlike anything I’d seen, like the drawbridge to a castle (retroactively trying to determine what it was, I’m supposing it was Pont de la Caille).

Coming into Annecy, we passed beds of pink and white flowers in the middle of roundabouts and parked next to Parc Charles Bosson, in which beautifully landscaped beds of flowers were filled with fringed tulips, white and purple pansies, white anemones, and white flowers with yellow pollen centers that looked as though they would feel like clouds when touched.

Lake Annecy is thought to be one of the world’s most gorgeous lakes, and this is why: its color is like that of no other lake—not like that of the lakes on the German-Austrian border, a shiny gray-blue as if their water filled pools of obsidian, nor like that of Lake Geneva, a deep, pure blue (Évian, the town from where the bottled water comes, sits on Lake Geneva). It’s more like the aquamarine of a Monet painting, only clear, as opposed to a beautiful mess. The water catches and holds the sunlight, at the time subdued by clouds, allowing it to transpire from its surface only in shimmers with the rippling of the water.

Into the lake dip shady trees, their broad leaves made greener by the light of the water, while pedal boats float near a dock, waiting for summer. Across the lake, on forested mountains, sit half-clouds. They look like snow.

We walked along the lake into Annecy and between the canopies of the morning’s farmer’s market in the rain. Winding through people, umbrellas, and vendors quickly trying to pack up their goods, we walked alongside canals and flower boxes of poppies drooping under the weight of raindrops. The rain becoming heavier, we sat for tea and crêpes, and when we had finished, the sky had brightened. We walked back along the lake, now even more crystalline.