Sunday, June 14, 2009


When I was a little girl, my sister and I would collect two dimes from my mother so we could walk to the swimming hole and get a coke. It was a summer thing, this urge for carbonation and sweetness, and we only indulged on the hottest of July and August afternoons, at that lake where we spent summers for 16 years.

I always got a Fanta orange, and my sister got the real deal, Coca-Cola ("Co-cola") in a green glass bottle. In that time and place, all carbonated, bottled beverages were small-c cokes. We'd sip our cokes and hang out on the bridge over the boat dock cove, watching the fish guarding their nests, hoping for the occasional big bass to surface.

Once done, I'd beg my sister's bottle off her so I could put my eye up to the hole and see the world through that pale, watery green. It changed everything, that faint wash of the most lovely color. I always felt as if I were entering another world, looking at the summer sun, at the cabins surrounding the lake, through that pale bottle glass. Everything was hushed, beautiful, glowing.

"That green" has apparently had an appeal for a lot of folks. Back in the '30s, that pale, golden, soft green was actually called that green, for lack of a better word. But who couldn't know it from that? It was the green of Fire King, the green of Fiesta, of Riviera. It accented glassware, spatulas, stoves, and aprons. Martha Stewart practically built an empire on it. Most folks, even now, are enchanted by that green.

You can surely imagine my delight, then, to have launched myself from the east side of the beach at Chileno Bay in San Jose del Cabo, to find myself suspended in the most crystalline, glowing, warm, lush shade of that green I've ever seen. It was like living inside the coke bottle, suspended by an unceasing wash of water, looking at the sky, at the rocks, the fish, the sandy bottom of the ocean, and everything tinged with that indescribable color.

I wish I could take you there with my words. It was probably the prettiest thing I've ever seen in my life. If there's a heaven, everything will surely be that exquisite shade of green. I've snorkeled a lot in the Caribbean, yet I've never experienced anything quite like the green of the waters of Chileno Bay. I would give anything to go back.

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Blogger jen said...

I love your writing. Posts like this are like a lullaby. Last summer, while frequenting garage sales I found THAT GREEN for 50 cents. It's a that green vaseline/uranium glass.

want it?

June 16, 2009 9:45 AM  
Anonymous Michele said...

Lovely Lynette - just lovely. Nice to have you back.

June 16, 2009 2:45 PM  
Blogger Chris said...

That was wonderful, and I know of what you speak...yes, with that passion, you will be back....

June 16, 2009 8:44 PM  
Blogger ewe said...

I certainly want to go there now.

June 16, 2009 11:00 PM  
Blogger more cowbell said...

oh girl, you did take me there with your words. Enough that I got one of those involuntary shivers. I miss heat so bad I can practically smell it.

June 18, 2009 2:26 AM  
Blogger Jeff said...

What a gorgeous depiction.

Greens are my favorite colors, from the rich greens of cool grass to the swimming pool aquas all the way to chartreuse, which really is more of a lifestyle than it is a mere color.

Hope you have many adventures to come in your verde paradise.

June 18, 2009 7:55 PM  
Anonymous John said...

You have a nice writing style and an authentic voice. You can make something from nothing: magic from a coke bottle.

June 21, 2009 10:12 PM  
Blogger Father Tony of the Farmboyz said...

I am beginning to conclude that there are two types of people in this world: those who have the ocean in them and those who do not.I do not deal well with those who don't have it - or worse - who let it seep away.

June 25, 2009 11:15 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

good one... thanks for sharing....

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August 08, 2009 2:22 AM  
Anonymous Tater said...

Orange and grape were my go to flavors of "coke". When we spent time at Green Leaf State Park, They had those machines with the little vertical side door, that had the tops of the bottles poking through. I will never forget the sensation of opening that door, gripping the top of an ice cold bottle and PULLING! I would put the cold bottle to my sunburned forehead and neck, before popping the cap on the machine, and listening to the bottle cap jingle its way down to join the others. Those summers were so hot, and that liquid nectar close to perfection.

July 29, 2013 8:17 AM  
Blogger BigAssBelle said...

Tater, those were my cokes too. And reading your comment, I can feel the cool that rushes from the machine as we opened the door, feel the cold glass and the roughness of the cap, hear the mechanical clinking as the bottle was tugged out, and yes, the jingle of the cap. Reading your post, I was transported back to 1965, western Kansas, a hot August day at 99 Springs.

July 29, 2013 10:37 AM  

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