On my way to Idaho

On my way to Idaho
The Road Less Traveled . . .

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Chasing the Sunset

We had a wonderful sunset here in So. Cal. this evening.

Luscious pink and salmon and lavender and aborigine clouds - colors thick and rich and warm and vibrant against a crystalline sapphire sky.  I could swim in them, taste them.

In times past such a sight would send me off to find the best vantage point as quickly as I could, to allow as much time as possible for savoring the unfolding artistry of the celestial evening drama.  This always entailed walking, or running.  When I lived in Hawaii I lived on the beach about 50 yards from Laie point -- a quick dash down the beach and a scramble part way up the rocky cliff and I had a marvelous vantage point; an unobstructed view along the shore and out over miles of ocean. Yeah, I have some great Hawaiian sunset memories.

In England I lived near the Ascot horse racing track. A great sunset view was a quick walk down to the end of the lane and across a walking path that passed by the eastern end of the race track; thus presenting a wonderful view of the sky across a landscape of the race track and open fields.

My parents had a generous property of about three acres. Our front lawn was over half acre and was lined with poplars, lilac and snowball bushes, and pine trees, and hibiscus.  When a great sunset presented itself I would run out and lie on my back smack in the middle of the lawn to watch--the trees and bushes framing the sky perfectly. Or, I would climb the hill behind the house and run to the point which offered a view of the Salt Lake Valley from the mountains on the east to the copper mine in the mountains to the west. 

All this is to say I faced a challenge tonight. Out the window behind my desk I could see the promise of an amazing sunset peeking through the trees. The trees surrounding my tiny yard  are old and tall and well endowed--they block out all views of the sky except straight up, and even that is mostly fringed with foliage.

There is a park about three blocks away. I could walk there if I am very careful; but I can't watch the sky as I walk. I have to watch the ground in front of me every step. The entire neighborhood is lined with hundreds of mature trees with extensive mature roots.  I have yet to find a stretch of sidewalk more then 15 feet or so that has not been heaved and shifted out of place by the tree roots (serious scary trip hazard!!).  If I did make t to the park to enjoy the sunset I would then have to walk home in the dark. - - - Ummmm, not a wise plan.

So I watched the sunset unfold from the driver's seat of my 'red-neck' truck--high above all the spiffy little cars most people here drive-- while driving west on highway 66.  Power lines, street lights, and lots of other cars tempered the view. But, I drove west watching the sky (and the road and stoplights and pedestrians, and other cars) relishing and wondering in the beauty of the world turning; and the perfect dependability of such things as sunsets. When the color had mostly eased out of the clouds and the sky held a distinctly indigo hue I turned around and drove home and watched the stars easing into the western night sky (as best as they can with the city lights of all of L.A. and the Inland Empire trying to drown them out).


I miss my leg and all that that means.

Yet -- It was a beautiful evening; I got my sunset.

Good times!


I didn't think it was such a good idea to try and take pictures while driving - - - so, this is one of my favorite Hawaiian sunset photos.  The back side of Diamond Head. I took it from the ridge line above the western beach of Molokai Island towards Oahu.

No comments: