dark and quiet

The weather in Florida was, to me, oppressively hot by the time we headed home. Temperatures in the mid-80's; sleeping on top of the blankets rather than under them.

When we arrived at the top of Cruso, coming across the Blue Ridge Parkway just after sunset, it was about 45 degrees Fahrenheit. Beautiful weather. And during the time between twilight and moon-rise, it became so dark that I couldn't see anything below the horizon. Glorious darkness, with brilliant stars in an ebony sky.

As soon as the moon rose above the eastern ridge, the landscape was brilliantly lit with clear light from a crystal Moon. The air was crisp and clean. Background sounds were limited to rustling leaves and the rushing river in the valley below. Peace.

In contrast, the full Moon as it hung in the Florida sky was dogged with haze from the humidity. The stars were almost completely washed out by light pollution. Background sounds were dominated by automobile traffic on US-19 punctuated by sirens and revving engines and colored with TV shows and conversation in the background.

We got home on Friday and have nearly caught up on our sleep. Lisa slept for 11 hours straight last night and I managed to get some decent sleep despite rising several times during the night. And the car is finally almost completely unpacked. File folders, boxes, cookware and clothing lie in piles around the house awaiting our attention.

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