Wednesday, September 20, 2006
Back West Again
The photo at the left is the type of plane Skywest flies, and the type of plane I flew on the last leg (of a three leg trip) from Salt Lake City to St. George. Photo from Skywest Airlines
Even with ear plugs, the props drone. Almost all the 30 seats on the SkyWest turbo-prop are filled. We’re flying at 24,000 feet, due south. I press my nose against the window and look out upon the rows of purple mountains to the west. The subtle light at dusk softens their rugged edges. On the horizon, below streaks of grey clouds, is a thin band of pink. Above, the clouds are fewer and the sky is still blue. It’s dark on the ground. I can see a few lights in the distant valleys and imagine that ranchers have finished supper and are now doing their evening chores. Occasionally, larger clusters of lights can be seen, indicating a town planted up along a bench between the mountains and the desert valley. A few headlights can be seen navigating highways 20,000 feet below. Experiencing this again feels good.
I step off the plane in St. George. It’s a hour after dark and the air is still warm, in the upper 70s. I meet my friends and in a few minutes we’re driving up I-15, climbing the Black Ridge. The windows feel cooler as we gain altitude. The Big Dipper is prominently positioned over the Pine Valley Mountains. Even in the darkness, I can make out the cliffs of the Hurricane Fault to the east. It’s all so familiar. It’s just a short trip, but it feels like I’m home.
Yes dear readers, Sage is traveling again. This time he’s back in the land of Purple Sage, Pinion Pine and all, with his backpack and will only occassionally be online. Luckily, for his sinuses, golden rod isn’t much of a problem in this country, but then there’s rabbit brush. I’m not sure what folks did before there were allergy drugs. Stay tuned for more postings. Tomorrow I have my double post with Pia's site and I finished up a post on the book, Parting the Waters which I've recently been quoting from regularly.