While so often in our day-to-day lives the answer is no, the freedom of being on vacation, especially somewhere beautiful and far from home, makes me say yes.
And what a relief it is to say yes! No prolonged conversations about why the answer is no. No putting my foot down to make a point. No whining, no begging and no pleading.
Just . . . yes! Yes, we can rent a pedalo boat. One with a slide for five Swiss Francs more? Sure, why not. We’re in Zurich, after all, the sun is shining and the lake beckons.
We pay the thirty Swissies and pedal out from the dock, distancing ourselves from the boats and bathers bobbing along the shore. The water, clean and clear, looks good enough to drink, lapping gently against the yellow hull of our floating playground. Our daughters perch at the top of the slide, one behind the other, as my husband and I cycle and steer slowly westward.
On the opposite side of the lake, Zurich’s western suburbs sprawl across the rolling green hillsides, with the Alps further beyond and a plume of water spouting triumphantly from the lake in front of them. How nice it must be to live here, I think to myself, for those who can afford it.
We stop pedaling and the girls slide like otters into the lake. “Come in!” they command, “The water’s so warm!” I wasn’t planning to swim this evening, and don’t have my bathing suit. But we are far enough from shore and even farther from home, so how could I possibly say no? “Yes, I’m coming!” I say, sliding into the turquoise-tinted waters of the Zurich See in my underwear.