Chased by the Sun

Aki and I are driving North, chasing the sun. That’s not quite right. We are looking for an end run around fog. When we left downtown, it blocked any view across Gastineau Channel. It seemed like the mountains had all been taken away for cleaning. Maybe we could find some relief out the road.

       Twenty miles from home the fog grew worse. I had to slow down due to reduced visibility. When we passed the Shrine of St. Therese and parted for a moment, revealing the white peak of Lion Mountain.  We drove on to the Eagle River flats, which normally offer views of the Chilkat Mountains and Admiralty Island. A wall of white rose up out of Lynn Canal so we couldn’t even see the edge of the flats.

            The sun eventually burned through the clouds, not enough to reveal itself or any blue sky, but enough to brighten the canal water. Aki and walked along the flats, spying on a resting eagle and some nonplussed mallard ducks. One hundred meters out, a hundred gulls gathered together on barely exposed sand bar. The eagle, which had been ignoring the ducks, flew low over the gulls’ resort, flushing them into the air. Minutes later, the gulls resettled on the bar. 

           The fog closed over the sun so we headed home. I stopped when it reappeared above a muskeg meadow and lit up the feathers of a raven. The raven croaked, as if bothered by the sudden spotlight, and flew into some nearby woods.   

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