Saturday, January 22, 2011
We all have them. Moments engraved in our mind's eye and our brain that are so stirring that we simply cannot forget them. Growing up the way I grew up, moving from Air Force station to Air Force station and homes, I've had a few of those moments.Some of them are large moments with large memories. Others had to be sought out, waited for, either in quiet, or heat, or kneeling on the sand being eaten alive by "no see'ums", or in the deep cold of a Virginia winter. Some were meant to happen, kismet.
Perhaps my first recollection of such a moment occurred when I was four or five years old. Our family was stationed at the time in Oklahoma, so going west was relatively easy. I recall a moment in my mind when my dad drove us out over a great dam ( Hoover Dam near Las Vegas, Nevada). It was evening and dark, with a beautiful sky of shimmering stars setting the stage. Out west, unlike where we southerners that live in urban areas and easterners that live in cities experience a dark sky with faded stars, the sky gives up its stars in profusion. Great crowded masses glow and the black sky is ink black. Pearls on a sea bottom, winking at one's eyes. The dam was gray, and massive, not massive, beyond massive, it had a life of its own. It breathed under my feet. The dam whirled and hummed and roared. Life broad and wild and large holding my body above Lake Mead and the mighty Colorado.