December 24th, 2009

Santahatted Owls and fish

Christmas Eve

Clear blue skies made the still-white snow brilliant among the tall, thin trees. The trees are silvered-brown, with a glow of red to them, elegant and towering. They feel so much taller than the forest I live near in England, so much narrower and flimsy than the strong, over-arching oaks of Des Moines. I associate them strongly with Connecticut; the woodland perched among the bluffs and excavated cut-throughs of the highways here.

We left D.C. this morning in darkness. Dawn rose, pink and gold, over Maryland, and by Delaware, it shone sharp and clear. I spent New Jersey thinking about the geography of friendship, all the people I know temporary or long-term staying along my route, unvisitable in the rapid tour which is this trip. The air was so clear over the Hudson that we could see New York City crisply backlit off in the far distance from the Tappan Zee bridge.

In Connecticut, sun-warmed water dripped slowly from tall, thin trees, and the air smelled fresh and clean from the light breeze over snow.