Two Hours, Forty-Seven Minutes

**timeline break**

It’s just another day up here. No one seems to care.  Just another reminder that I’m an Other (more on that later). Seriously, how can you not care about something that is humbling and awe-inspiring? Do you stand at the ocean’s edge and go, “eh. just a big bowla watta.”  Do you not Science?  Do you not think about the relative rarity and what effects something like this will have on light, on wildlife and nature, on weather?  I get it, on social media, it’s overwhelming and overdone, but goddamn.  Take a couple hours and appreciate the enormity of two enormous celestial bodies moving around us, something bigger than all of us.

I’ve procured glasses (thanks to a kind friend back in KS), and convinced my new friends K & D to come watch with me.  Somewhere else, somewhere outside of the place we work, so we don’t have to hear constant radio chatter, requests for toilet paper, propane tanks, moving reservations from one site to another.  Two and a half hours.  Just two and a half friggin’ hours of maybe being in wonder of the world rather than annoyed, angry, frustrated, sad, justifiably pissed off (are you paying attention? yes, I see you).  We can, and should, go back to that later.  So please don’t poo-poo anyone who is excited about this.  I understand.  I do.  I haven’t forgotten.  Everything is still there. 

It’s just smaller. 

For two hours, forty-seven minutes.

Lower Dells 1

Glaciers did that.  BOR-ING.

 

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Image

I thought of this photo the other day.  Not sure why.  There’s nothing spectacular about it.  It just…is.  Maybe it’s the colors, the natural life-theatre created by the curtains.  Maybe it’s the memory.

China was only the second trip I took overseas, the first being Europe only a few months previous.  Hong Kong was our first stop, easing us in, China-lite as I came to think of it once we crossed to the mainland.  Up until this point, we were merely a group of students, following, following, following until one day, Michelle and I got itchy, twitchy, asked Pok-Chi if we could find our own way for a few hours.  He was quietly pleased and acquiesced.  Later, it became rare that we would go with the group at all.  But this time, we ended up in what seemed to be a land of 7-Elevens and Western-friendly quiet red lights, fake pubs, and strip clubs with altars and offerings out front.  We met and made friends with a couple of women, one Thai, the other Filipino, and their Australian boyfriends Talked and shared a pint as we practiced our amateur investigative photojournalism, trying to earn their trust enough to ask for a photo.  This shot was taken as we were walking and there was a club with only a small slitted window on its big, black, secretive door.  I put my camera up and took a picture just to see what was in there.  Many mysteries aren’t really mysteries, just people living, people working.

More to follow…