Last weekend, our extraordinary friends and neighbors, Jan and Connor, lent us their newly purchased lake house for the weekend. It is at Lake of the Ozarks, a sprawling resort area in central Missouri. Lake of the Ozarks was created when the Osage River was dammed, resulting in a large reservoir. Over the years, it has been heavily developed, with many high-end hotels, upscale homes and condominium complexes springing up. But that is not the Lake of the Ozarks we experienced.
Jan and Connor's lake house is a charming little cottage with red sideboards, butter-colored shutters and window boxes full of flowers. It sits on a sleepy cove with neighbors who are mostly year-round residents. From the deck, the sun glinting off the lake's surface looks like a million paparazzi's flash bulbs. The water is warm, the sun is hot and the occupants of the occasional boat wandering into our little corner of the Lake wave hello. Birds rustle busily in the trees overhead, and at night insects play their buzzing song.
BAGNELL DAM STRIP
Within walking distance is the Bagnell Dam strip. Full of arcades, tourist shops and ice cream stands, it is a throwback to an earlier era. My husband Michael, who spent his summers on the Lake many years ago, was astounded by how little it had changed. At night, it is a spectacle of neon lights, garish signs and strange, giant statues of Indian chiefs and lumberjacks. I couldn't wait to snap some photos. Click for a larger view:
Bumper cars and Skee ball
50 cent baseball
Your weight and horoscope
Thanks, Jan and Connor. We can't wait to go back.