The promise of sunrise beckoned me out of the house and into an unseasonably mild January morning. There was light fog around, lending a melancholy or mysterious mood to the scenery. Walking a bit, I gazed out across a small lake and watched geese warily watch me. I strolled through a nearby cemetery as the sun slipped nearer the horizon. A small pond reflected colors left over from autumn, tree branches, and grass green from recent warmth. The sun began to shine through bare trees and the fog burned off. The fog-touched morning magic was gone.
Heading out this morning to breakfast and a bit of grocery shopping we were treated to an amazing sunrise. At first sight the appearance was one of floating bits of paper in the sky with edges trimmed with fire. While I had a decent camera with me, there was no decent place to stop for a clear view — only trees, wires, and buildings. We pressed on, looking now for an open space and, at long last, found one. The air will chill and the breeze was strong and it wasn’t long before my fingers hurt. Still, even though I missed shots of the sky’s peak color, the cloud forms and the rapidly changing hues were well worth the effort.
The lovely atmospheric effect called the Belt of Venus was quite visible this morning; I was able to capture it just before the rising sun wiped it out. Looking west, just a bit after sunrise, we see a dark shadow band near the horizon — Earth’s shadow projecting off through the atmosphere. Above the shadow are warm colors caused by atmospheric scattering of light. I’m hoping, some time over the next few clear mornings, to capture earlier and better views of this beautiful phenomenon.
Thursday’s sunrise, ushering in a rainy morning, was spectacular! Low-angle, warm sunlight illuminated bands of clouds high overhead — the bands and swirls actually reminded me of the cloud bands of planet Jupiter, though ours were a different color. I had high-tailed it to the closest vantage point where my camera could get a halfway decent view. In the few minutes as I watched, the sunrise colors changed from hot pink, through red-orange, to a faded yellow. This is what I got: Before the storm – sunrise over the antenna farm.
A couple of days can make a tough week! On Wednesday I showed up at the office in the afternoon, expecting to stay an hour or three late to complete a system migration and movement of a large shared file on our staff’s server. I drove home at 4:00 AM Thursday, got maybe 45 minutes of rest after being awake for about 23 hours, then headed back into the office for about another eight hours on the job. While I don’t much like working all night, I was pretty pleased our users saw no interruption in services. Such is the lot of the “IT guy” — if you do your job right and everything works well, you labor in anonymity; if you blow it, everybody knows your name! So I guess I’m strangely pleased nobody knows I did anything. I got a solid six hours of sleep last night and went in today for an easy four hours this morning. As I headed out, I was treated to a glorious sunrise and, though in a hurry to get to work and make a final adjustment to the systems, I felt the need to stop, look, and picture. Welcome to the weekend!
This day dawned bright and crisp making the commute to work more pleasant. Dropping into the valley, I looked around as I crossed the bridge over the West Branch of the Columbia River in Olmsted Township. The rising sun was kissing trees at the rim of the valley, trees that had so far held on to their colored leaves. I stopped for five minutes to snap some photos and enjoy the view and wished I could have explored the frosty fields I’d passed along the way. Hi-ho, it’s off to work I go!
It was a beautiful morning at nearby Hinckley Lake where I went to enjoy the quiet early day. It's a needed respite which will help me prepare for the long day ahead; a day which will include working til about midnight on a computer server that is on its last legs. Here we see the early sun shining through mists rising from the still surface of the lake. How I would have loved to spend more time there and how I would love to go out tonight — the skies should be wonderful for astronomy. Alas, I must work to earn an income. Money may not buy happiness, but it helps!