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Posts Tagged ‘sunsets’

 “Clouds come floating into my life, no longer to carry rain or usher storm, but to add color to my sunset sky.” Rabindranath Tagore

 

Looking eastward at the sunset over Lake Walcott, Aug. 17, 2011. -- Photo by Pat Bean

Travels With Maggie

There’s a scene in the first released episode of “Star Wars” in which Luke Skywalker is standing outside at the end of the day, staring at the sky.

You immediately know he’s not on Planet Earth because the sky is lit by two moons. That scene has long stayed with me. It had a haunting quality about it that imprinted on my catch-all brain.

The scene flashed in my mind again the first time I visited Lake Walcott in Southern Idaho a few years ago. As always, Maggie and I were taking our walk at the end of the day.

We were standing on a point overlooking the lake, her sniffing at a bush, and me staring up at a princess pink sunset with a half-moon framed between glowing clouds. It was an awesome, but not unfamiliar sight – until I realized I was looking east.

Quickly turning around, I saw a second sunset, a Halloween orange one peeking from behind cottonwood and Russian olive trees. This was the real sunset. The eastern one was a trick of the lake.

 

The same sunset view looking west, Aug. 17, 2011. If you look carefully you can see Gypsy Lee beneath the trees, -- Photo by Pat Bean

The calm water, acting like a mirror, had captured the sunset and then reflected the hues, now muted, up into the clouds.

Depending on the weather, the clouds and what’s hanging around in the air, the sunsets here at Lake Walcott range from a”Brahms Lullaby” to the clash of cymbals in Beethoven’s “1812 Overture.” While the eastern display is barely visible on quieter nights, it can outshine its western source on the louder nights.

I’ve seen both versions many times now since this is my second year as a summer volunteer campground host here at Lake Walcott. But they can still can take my breath away.

And they did that just two nights ago. I was standing at my favorite spot overlooking the lake when the show began. It lasted for a good 10 minutes, going from pastel to vibrant hues than fading into darkness.

I wish you had been here to see it with me.

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Each sunset makes yet another mark on the calendar of our lives. I don't want to miss a single one. -- Photo by Pat Bean

 

The illimitable, silent, never-resting thing called Time, rolling, rushing on, swift, silent, like an all-embracing ocean-tide, on which we and all the universe swim like exhalations, like apparitions which are, and then are not.” — Thomas Carlyle

Travels With Maggie

As I typed the date in my journal this morning, I wanted to scream. Where in Hades has two months of the year gone already?

Time, as someone who no longer has to spend a third of it making a living, is my friend. But time, as someone who has less of it ahead than behind, is my enemy. This latter is true for both me and my dog, Maggie, who sadly at 13 most likely has fewer days ahead of her than I do.

Just the thought of losing her brings tears to my eyes. But that’s the reality of loving something. Maggie won’t be the first pet I’ve lost. And if Father Time is kind to me might not even be the last.

One day bare twigs, the next day bursting with color. -- Photo by Pat Bean

The pain of loss, however, is outweighed by the richness my feline and canine companions have added to my life over the years. I truly believe Alfred Lord Tennyson’s words: “Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.” I’m sure he was speaking about human relationships, but those count in my book, too.

I was thinking on this during this morning’s walk when I came upon a patch of purple. A lilac bush – which Maggie and I have passed daily while waiting for winter to end so we can get back on the road – appeared to have budded overnight.

It was another example of how time, which once moved slow as a snail when I was a child awaiting Christmas, is now going 200 miles-per-hour in a 20 miles-per-hour school zone.

I can’t slow Father Time. All I can do is go along for the ride. Getting off and standing still is not an option for Maggie and me.

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