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Thursday, September 30, 2010

Red Sky at Night: A Valley Delight…

DSCN3299 There is sentiment in this household that my last post was a bit on the dark side. If so, in case my fall thoughts may have cast a pall on the the season, this post should make amends.

The sun is always setting somewhere. The spheres spin; Old Sol just squats in the middle of things. Sunrise. Sunset. Pete and repeat. We do all the work. At this moment the sun is setting-- in Cairo, Vladivostok, Capetown, Honolulu…on Mars—perhaps in Heaven.

You need a special blend to produce the spectacular. With sunsets, clouds are essential. Without them you might as well whip up an omelet without eggs. A nephologist could tell you the best mix of cumulous, stratus, cirrus, nimbus to refract the setting sun’s rays and daub the Western sky with a palette of fire. Particulates in the air assist: smog, wildfire smoke, contrails. An unobstructed view of the Western horizon is a must. But I don’t want to science away beauty; let your eyes be the beholders. Let the Old Master Painter’s brush capture the Western sky gallery. Stand back and marvel at the show.

Tropical sunsets trump all, they say. I have seen Maui sunsets, watched the sun sink into the Western sea, crowning crests of waves gold and crimson, and I admit they are impressive. Tualco Valley sunsets may not gild Pacific billows, nor silhouette swaying palms, but I will pit them against the best the tropics can paint in the Western sky. Let me bring some splendor to your evening by sharing some of our Valley’s finest evening solar flares.



















Sunsets here in the Valley, as is the case with all sunsets, are works in progress: they evolve rapidly with kaleidoscopic variety. By the time you rush for the camera, the show’s likely over, the spectacle swallowed up by dusk--and like the kaleidoscope screen, ephemeral, a singular refractive phenomenon. So put supper on simmer. Pause a moment during the evening chores. Gaze to the West. Put the day on hold and rejoice in the evening sun’s grand exit, for in the lyrics of that old Irish song: “The cares of tomorrow can wait until this day [and this sunset are] done.”Tualco sunset

P.S. Let the competition begin. My number one follower contends that Eastern Washington sunsets rival the Valley’s. I’ve posted one such. You be the judge. The author.

E. Wash. Sunset

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