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A picture’s memory of Tablerock Lake

The water is so smooth you can see reflections of everything

A sketchy drawing of a boy floating in the water with skis poking out of the water

Our family has a lot of memories out on Tablerock Lake. My uncle Steve had a Nissan 300ZX and a red Crown Line ski boat. His CD player would slip out of the car and into the 19-foot red boat. On one cool evening Aaron Neville was on repeat and singing a private concert on the water for us all.

Glass best describes the cool dark lake water. I am donning a brand-new yellow life jacket with stripes of blue and red. I have to force my feet into the small kiddie-sized bindings of the junior water skis. They are supposed to fit very tight. I hold the rope the best way, one hand overhand, the other underhand. The stylish, always brightly colored, ski rope must be pulled between the ski tips that barely point out of the water. I sit down in the water with my knees tucked way into my chest — and with all the courage in the world I yell out, “Hit it” and the giant speed boat roars to life.

It is imperative that those knees and elbows stay tucked in as I am pulled faster and faster through the water. As the red speed boat surges up to speed, spray everywhere, I am tugged out of the water. The trick is to let the boat do the work. As it comes up to plane, my uncle trims the controls.

The first business, once I am on top of the water, is to tuck the triangle handle under my elbow. Looking very cool now, I can take my free hand, wipe the water off my face and slick back my hair and wave back to the audience on the boat.

Eventually my young legs will falter and when I hit the water I am moving at such a speed that my body skips like a stone across the lake. My cousin Amber yells out, “He’s down, He’s down.”


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