“There is a light that shines in the darkness, which is only visible there.”
― Barbara Brown Taylor, Learning to Walk in the Dark
Too many years of getting up early at early thirty, I guess. I am standing in front of my western facing kitchen sink window admiring the moon as I prepare my morning coffee. It is cold and crisp with a strong northern breeze. The waning but bright “La Luna Llena” seems so close that I might be able to reach up and touch it and I have no clue as to why I think of it in Spanish.
I normally don’t have to set an alarm to wake up by five o’clock despite having no special place to be and an icy driveway that would prevent me from going out anyway. This morning my rambling “dream thoughts” awoke me at four thirty along with a puppy dog wanting to go outside.
It is mornings like this that I am glad my “dream puppy” awoke me. Most mornings in a time gone by I would get up at four-thirty so I could run or walk before school. This habit has been hard to break.
This morning as Quigley and Cora attended their ablutions, I braced myself in the chilly wind and looked heavenward into a sky filled with stars. It was wonderful to see and for a moment transported me to an earlier time. It was nice to see Orion was still hunting across the southwestern sky.
I ran or walked early, before school or before the summer heat and humidity. I always knew that if I waited, my labors would not get done and I really didn’t want to feel that elephant sitting on my chest again that I associate with an earlier heart attack.
As scary as the outside darkness could be, even with my “miner’s lamp” style flashlight, I loved running, probably more so walking, on mornings like this…even with the coldest temperatures of the season.
The light cast from the moon was so bright I really didn’t need to use a flashlight. I would climb up the hill on Airline Road and crossover Highway 11 to the drive leading into Lookup Lodge. It was as if the moon was following me, always right over my left shoulder until it disappeared behind the small mountains to the west.
Above me Orion hunted despite the pre-dawn glow of the still unrisen sun. As I chugged, wheezing and gasping, out of what I called the hole and climbed the asphalt path up toward the lake, I always knew that both the moon and Orion would be waiting for me as soon as I topped the next hill and found my way to the eastern side of the lake. I also knew that I would pause, stop timing my run, and admire the scene of the moon setting over the lake.
I miss running and I miss the cold, morning air with its full dose of oxygen. I miss the feeling of accomplishment. I still get up at dark thirty, but I wait until a civilized hour to walk. It isn’t the same, but it is something.
It is time to feed the puppies and a cup of coffee…and my nose is getting numb in the windchill.
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One thought on “Chasing Orion”
I think it’s good to be an early riser. Mentally, emotionally, energy-wise.