Summer Relief by Angela Spires

The first time I saw the Truckee River was in causal passing. I wasn’t impressed. The next time I saw the river, I actually saw the river. I stood on a bridge near Wingfield park, listening to music from a festival taking place. Young children stood in the shallow pools, splashing and laughing, as their parents sunned on the rocks. Innertubes floated by at random intervals. Up river, some a few people cast fishing rods. Down river, people steadied themselves on slick rocks that seemed would, at any moment sweep them away. There river wasn’t fierce, but was it was steady, moving the fun forward. Flowers on the bridge pulled colors of pink and purple to enhance the beauty, but the river didn’t need it. The colors below were endless. Bathing suits, sun dresses, inner-tubes, blankets, coolers, all mixed with the dark stones and rushing water. There wasn’t a ‘still’ spot that day. The river was full of excited, of refreshment, of hobby, of adventure. The river was an extension of the town, an essential piece of Reno, running right through the middle. Others stopped on the bridge to enjoy the view. The river was joy. Reno’s joy. Though just a piece of the river was here, the feeling of the review expanded outward to encompass a large portion of the down. It called to passersbys. It beckoned people to dip a toe in. It laid out flat rocks for summer towels. It screamed, I am summer relief. Come to me. Let me sweep you away.