corvi (corivax) wrote,

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Camping between

This weekend, went camping (asteroid watching expedition! A telescope should be an integral part of most camping trips) with gfish, xiadyn, vixyish, shadowblue, and dymaxion. Not backpacking, just parked our cars at a campsite and set up our tents there. It was wonderful - just getting away from the buzzing hive of personalities that make up a major city, even if it wasn't quite as much an escape as backpacking would have been.

I found the whole place very timeless. There's a Welsh legend about a warrior who can be killed neither by day nor by night, neither clothed nor naked, neither on land nor in water. So they kill him climbing into an outdoor bath, one foot on the stone of the steps and the other in water, half-undressed, at twilight. This was like that, except with fewer half-naked warrior kings. A between-place. dymaxion and I arrived shortly before sunset, and so it was that I was on the beach at twilight with the tide rushing in, between day and night and land and sea and sky.

(Sorry, I was willing to make all the other images nice and small, but this one in exceedingly beautiful.)

Rocky beach, and when the waves wash over the rocks, they drag and roll and clatter and sing hollowly. The hoofbeats of horses graygreen like the sea with mane and tail of foam and hooves of polished black stone, a distant musical bellsong that calls them. Gray sea, gray stones. shadowblue and I stare for a long while at the sea, while the tide rises and washes around our feet, and I search behind me with my fingertips for a round, smooth rock to warm in the palm of my hand and carry the song back to the campsite with me.

Every single smooth wet clattery rock reflects the glow of sunset, so that they sing with red and orange and purple and blue as well as the sea's song. The sunset is in the fog, in the sea, upon the rocks, in the chill salt spray upon my face.

And that night and the next morning, it was foggy. I watched the fog creep upward and obscure Mars and the skyline and the ocean and the stars, and when I crept silent from my tent to piss, there was so much fog I felt it in my lungs, settle into my blood. I do not think I could have made noise even had I wanted to; all but the gray sea rushing ceaselessly headlong over gray stone was hidden and silenced and velvet-soft.

I went down to the sea with camera the next morning, and got terribly lost (missed packing up my tent, even). Found myself on a path I had not seen before. Who knows? Perhaps it had not been there. Few things seem more magical than an ocean shrouded in fog. Crow wingbeats overhead, sand perfectly soft and unmarked, the ocean or the fog hiding my footprints before I even make them. A crow calls overhead, once, harshly. No-place, and every-place. Perhaps I should have been looking for an ill-fated Welsh king. I found silver hoofbeats, and soft sand, and a hundred thousand colors, all of them gray.

It was beautiful beyond words, and far beyond photos. You should all count yourselves lucky I kept myself to five.

vixyish's commentary. xiadyn's commentary. I think it's interesting that we all wrote of the same trip, but very different entries.

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