There’s a park down on the water, about a mile from my house and it’s full of towering cedar and spruce trees. When I drove into our neighborhood, I could just see the tops of the trees poking through the fog and I could not see the water at all, so thick was the blanket of white covering it. But behind me, to the east, the sky was bright blue — the blanket that had been covering us for days had finally burned off and the sun was warm. I unlocked the back door and shouted down the stairs at the husband.
“Hey, get your shoes, I want to show you something!”
“Now? Right NOW?
“Yes, now. I’m afraid it’s not going to last.”
We keep our view a few blocks away, it makes our mortgage much more affordable. At the park bench provided by the nice folks who store our view, it looked like we should walk down into the upper part of the park where there’s a solstice marker, a big earthwork installation that casts long shadows down astronomically accurate channels. After we stepped out on to this big sundial, we were at about eye level with the fog, it streamed through the trees, the sun diffused by the delicate net of water hanging in the sky. Behind us, everything was lit bright in perfect afternoon fall color, the sky a saturated Kodachrome blue, the leaves red to brown to gold. And in front, the soft gray green of those giant trees blanketed in fog.
On the way up, we talked to a neighbor who keeps his view at his house. He was cutting the grass on the median.
“You win with this,” I said.
“I bought the house on a whim, after a few glasses of wine, that was back in 197… uh….”
“Seems like it was the right choice.”
“Go walk down on the back patio,” he offered. “Sometimes, when I’m losing perspective, I just pour myself a glass of wine and admire it all.”
“We’ve stood in your driveway,” I confessed.
“Next time, say hello!” he said, and we exchanged names, and handshakes, and wandered back home.
About an hour later, the fog crept back up the hill and the sky turned first back to that soft gray and then, the sun went down.