Monday, February 13, 2006

Skiing Under The Moon

On this lovely crisp evening seven grown ups, two little ones, and five dogs at Tumalo Falls, about 20 minutes from town, went to slide on very packed, icy snow. What is it about us human folk that make us want to experience variety? Is it that we feel some sort of a need not to repeat the same activity over and over? A deer, for example, wonders endlessly in search of one thing. In fact, so do many other living things. Not us. We get to enjoy all sorts of things over and over. One another, ‘nature’, food, television, travel, education, jobs, telephones, hats, and books are just some examples we take for granted as part of our experience.
We set out on pretty bumpy, icy snow as we headed up into the hills along Tumalo road, which ended at a parking lot and the lower of many many waterfalls that cascade through the mountains. Joanna had Nicholai on her back in a backpack carrier. John was pulling their new ‘chariot’ with Ella in it. The rest of us were free to ski as we could. I, not being too stable when it comes to balance, had to concentrate heavily on not falling over. Softer snow offers me a little more support, as it can be more forgiving on the skis and head.
A little way into our ski we could see the approaching hill-mountain was glowing nicely. It didn’t take long to realize the rising Moon, which was not yet in our sight, was making it glow so mystically. Within minutes the hills in front of us started to glow some more, and we realized that the presence of the Moon was imminent. Looking behind us we saw another hill, and in spectacular silence, the rays of the full glowing Moon. Watching with a combination of cliché and surprise, I could see conifers on the top of the hill silhouetted by the bright Moon. The Man in the Moon quickly showed us his left eye, then nose, and looked down on us as our path suddenly change from black to shiny white.
I envisioned myself planet-surfing. The rock on which I was standing whipped down with amazing speed as the stationary Moon let me see more of what it was really made out of. It never ceases to inspire and strike me how much we don’t know. How much we are in the grips of the planet on which we stand. How little we realize that. How often we look at something a quarter the size of our planet, 250,000 miles away, and not feel humbled by the enormity of it all. Once again I realized the value of seeing a full Moon rising. I don’t remember when I last sat and watched a full Sun rise. It has happened, but not intentionally. That’s something I should plan for. Although, the Sun being 93,000,000 miles away rings differently in my eyes. That’s a lot of miles. The Moon’s distance is almost manageable. Steve Coy’s Ford Ranger has gone that far. My head spun with the excitement of seeing a full Moon rise and anxiety over falling to the ground in misbalance. Funny contrast, but real in my brain, and it was difficult to let go of the anxiety.
We skied until Joanna’s shoulders could bare the weight and strain no longer, and we returned back to the car. The others kept on going. I can only assume they had a glorious time basking in the reflection of the Sun off the Moon. Nicholai fell asleep in the car, then in bed. The Winter Olympians skied and skated in Italy. And we ate and rested in the United States.
2/13/06

1 comment:

Dick said...

Isn't writing for fun, fun? I enjoyed your essays and could picture you in the various scenes. Keep it up.

Dad