The Pull

    One evening 35 years ago at Lake Atitlan, I felt myself joining a silent migration to the shoreline, pulled by the magnificent beauty of color and light. Quetzaltenango was off-limits to us Peace Corps volunteers because of the war. Buses traveled with pine boughs attached to their front bumpers to brush away debris scattered by guerreros on the roadways, while the army pulled over buses in what they called a draft. But of course, I had to go anyway. I've never forgotten the silent, spontaneous stream of people that evening, moving in two and threes, pulled by  the power of color, the beauty of light, a powerful sight that transcended politics, passports, and race.  One evening this week I stepped onto our deck awed by the color and light of the setting sun. My neighbor Dennis, whose spectacular photos have sometimes graced this blog, was already outside with his camera looking west - you can see him in the far left, and across the channel, another neighbor stood on the roof of the El Paso House, camera in hand; each of us, perhaps, as Vita Sackville-West once said, attempting to "clap the net over the butterfly of the moment."

 

One evening 35 years ago at Lake Atitlan, I felt myself joining a silent migration to the shoreline, pulled by the magnificent beauty of color and light. Quetzaltenango was off-limits to us Peace Corps volunteers because of the war. Buses traveled with pine boughs attached to their front bumpers to brush away debris scattered by guerreros on the roadways, while the army pulled over buses in what they called a draft. But of course, I had to go anyway. I've never forgotten the silent, spontaneous stream of people that evening, moving in two and threes, pulled by  the power of color, the beauty of light, a powerful sight that transcended politics, passports, and race.

One evening this week I stepped onto our deck awed by the color and light of the setting sun. My neighbor Dennis, whose spectacular photos have sometimes graced this blog, was already outside with his camera looking west - you can see him in the far left, and across the channel, another neighbor stood on the roof of the El Paso House, camera in hand; each of us, perhaps, as Vita Sackville-West once said, attempting to "clap the net over the butterfly of the moment."