We were greeted by pelicans. Some were just overhead, heavily banking and wheeling like airplanes being flown by trainee pilots. Some were higher up, flying in formation. Some were just sitting on the lake with their big beaks stuck out in front like signposts to nowhere.
Lake Cargelligo isn't really on the way to anywhere in particular and isn't big enough to be a destination in its own right. Which means it's the perfect place to visit. The lake is sanctuary for the aformentioned pelicans, black swans and great crested grebes (not that I'd know; I read that in the motel's Guide to Lake Cargelligo. Well, I know pelicans and swans but I wouldn't know a grebe from a budgerigar).
The motel was fewer than a hundred metres from the edge of the lake and the entire east wall of our room was glass, a window onto the water.
The show started at 6am.
There was absolutely no noise. It was so quiet you could hear yourself breathe. At first, there a slight tinge in the sky, low down. Or was there? It was indistinct and was of no discernible colour. After a while there was a colour, which might have been faint lilac and might have been something else. The colour grew and changed to purple and then parts of that turned deep red, like a scar across the bottom of the eastern sky. The light was just enough to dimly reveal the lake which was as flat and still as an abandoned mirror. After a while, maybe ten minutes, maybe twenty, the scar grew some more and the red turned orange. It stayed that way for a while and then, all of a sudden, fiery liquid gold seemed to ooze out of the horizon and it spread like molten lava across the lake.
Then the birds all woke up at once and the racket was deafening.
I forget what happened for the rest of the day.