There is one clue in the behavior of UFOs which suggests strongly that their origin lies beyond our solar system. It is their attitude toward water. As far as we know, Earth is the most watery of planets in our particular system. Perhaps in some form water lies in or under the clouds of Venus or in the gaseous layers of the outer planets. To a small degree it is almost certainly present on Mars.
But large deep bodies of water such as ours seem definitely unique in our solar system. Presumably, therefore, if our space visitors came from a neighboring planet, they would approach our lakes and oceans with wary respect. Without such watery expanses of their own, they would never feel at ease on or in ours, no matter how advanced their technical development.
But the striking fact is that, where water is concerned, UFOs appear far more at home even than ourselves. They seem to regard it as an element barely distinguishable from air and, except for an apparent interest in sampling it (ref. May-June issue), they treat it with indifference. They have been seen flying into it and emerging from it at full speed. Observations of strange subsurface luminous discs suggest they may even live under it.
Now we have learned of a case in which a UFO was observed boating on a lake much as we would on a casual outing. For a few minutes the object looked like any vacation craft, but then there were differences.
Although the incident occurred in 1952, it did not come to light until recently when it was reported to us by two of the witnesses. They were Stewart S. of Ladysmith, BC, an electrical operator with the provincial power system, and his cousin by marriage, Dorothy S., a Red Cross nurse now responsible for the medical care of an Indian settlement in BC's Caribou country. Another witness was Dorothy S's late husband.
" We were living at Summerland on Lake Okanagan at the time," Stewart said, " and Dorothy and Gordon had just arrived from Vancouver to visit us for a while. As it was her first trip to the Okanagan since leaving her home in England, we had set out on a motor trip for the day to see some of the country.
" It was a clear bright morning in September, and when we reached the ferry slip to cross over to Kelowna we realized we would have to wait a bit because we could see the ferry still on the other side. And then about half a mile north of the ferry we noticed this other thing."
" I remember pointing it out and saying what a beautiful white boat it was," Dorothy S. added. " It was moving around so gracefully, and though we still couldn't make it out very well at that distance, it seemed to have a smooth round design we had never seen before."
As the three watched from their car in admiring curiosity, they noticed the strange craft had started to move across the lake in their direction. By that time cars for the ferry were beginning to line up behind them, so they were also in a position to observe what happened next.
"We could see the wash coming out from either side, yet somehow the boat, as we thought it was, didn't seem to be moving very fast," Stewart said. (Dorothy compared it to a line from Dante, "Hasten slowly.") "As it came closer we still thought it must be some unusual kind of modern boat. It looked like a round hard hat sitting on a platter. But there was something about that wash that looked different and that started us wondering."
Although neither could explain precisely what the difference was, possibly it was caused by the circular shape of the craft moving lightly on the surface, like a flatly thrown stone.
"Then suddenly it really surprised us," Stewart continued. "It was a few hundred yards away when all at once the wake disappeared and we realized the thing was in the air. It changed direction to the right so that it came straight toward the ferry dock and then it stopped dead, less than 100 feet in front of us and about 50 feet above the water."
Despite the 17 years that had since elapsed, Stewart's memory of that experience was obviously still very much with him. He shook his head in amazement as he spoke of it and seemed to live the whole experience over again.
His cousin, on the other hand, said she had not thought of it for a long while, though she was sufficiently impressed at the time to make a note of it in her diary.
"We sat in the car spellbound," she said. "We couldn't believe what was happening and afterwards, for some reason, we had no desire to talk about it. It was as if we had been told not to."
The witnesses described the object as about 30 feet in diameter and having a haziness which made the outline indistinct. Also it had a translucent quality which gave them the impression that anyone inside could have seen them without being seen in return. (A description of translucence often occurs in sighting reports in which the UFO is dome shaped, such as this one.)
"It stayed there, absolutely silent, for a minute or so," Stewart said. "and we definitely had a feeling it was watching us. Then it started back across the lake. By this time I was out of the car to get a better look and I told the others I wished I had a pair of binoculars. An American tourist in the car behind heard me and said, 'Here take mine. I've seen enough.' He looked as if it had scared him."
Through the binoculars Stewart watched the object reach the opposite shore, just over two miles away, in five or six minutes, giving it a leisurely speed of about 20 mph. Then it seemed to fly parallel to a trail bordering the lake before it shot up and disappeared.
After a moment Stewart handed the binoculars back to their owner, and he remembers how they stared silently at each other in disbelief.
"I guess I looked just as shocked as he did," Stewart said, "and it must have affected the others the same way. We were a pretty quiet bunch going across on the ferry."
Having seen and been examined by craft that may have come from a world light years away, it was no wonder.
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