Saturday, January 17, 2009

Above the Fog

“And I’m listening to my music so don’t talk to me,” he says as he inserts the buds deep into his ears.

Drew and I are on our way to Cypress. I left work an hour early so that he could meet up with his friends at 3:30 at the bottom of an undisclosed chair (“I’m not telling you where. You’ll just want to spy on me and take pictures of me and my friends”) just as their mandatory ski/boarding lessons end.

Those mandatory lessons? And the school rule of checking in with the teacher/parent-in-charge-of-the-check-in-list once during the evening? And the requirement that all boarders wear helmets and wrist guards? Those three things? Those are the reasons that he did not sign up to join the school’s Cypress Mountain Boarding program and get a ride with the rest of his friends on the bus. And that is why he has me as his personal chauffeur.

It’s true. I did have this notion; call it a fantasy if you will, that I would get some good action shots of Drew and his buddies enjoying the beautiful outdoors. There were rumors, that even though we are suffocating under a blanket of fog in the valley, the recreational area of Cypress was above the cloud line and it would be bright and sunny and warm and clear and blue-skied. So, yes, I did have my camera along. And yes, I did want to take pictures of him, smiling and having fun.

I sure hate that he is at that stupid age where I can’t be his facebook friend or talk to him on a one-and-a-half-hour drive. Or be anywhere near him and his friends when they are having fun. He knows he is being a d-bag. He assured me he’d be nice again when he’s 21. Good lord that’s 7 years from now.

Anyway, I ignored his request/demand that I not talk to him, and I talked to him. Every once-in-awhile, despite himself, he’d take the bait and respond. And by the time we were crossing over the Port Mann Bridge, he was fully engaged. For some of you moms with children not as beastly as mine, having conversations is probably no big deal. For me, they are so rare; I have to blog about them.

By the time we crossed over the Second Narrow’s bridge, he was expressing joy. And happiness. And enthusiasm. And it was almost like I had a bigger, hairier version of my very endearing 5 year old Drew.

At one point, on the Upper Levels Highway, I said, conversationally, “What kind of car is that behind us?” To me it looked sporty and I thought he’d be interested.

“OH MY GOSH!” he said in bold, cap letters. “That’s a brand new Nissan Skyline!” He unbelted himself to get a good look. A really good look. “Oh my goodness, I can’t believe it. That’s my favourite car…” He continues to explain the rarity of the model and the beauty of the styling. He is drooling. I’m sure it’s dripping through the floor boards and causing issues with other cars on the road. “Get in the other lane. Let him pass us.”

So I switch to the right line with Drew still kneeling on the passenger seat, watching the car of his dreams slowly creep up beside us. For a few precious moments, with Drew practically jumping over me and out my window, the car slows down and drives right beside us, giving Drew a close look at the side styling. And then? And then, because the other driver was a male, and because he had an audience to impress, he kicked it into high gear and screamed ahead of us in the open lane, leaving a very impressed 14 year old boy joyously eating his dust.

“DID YOU SEE THAT? DID YOU SEE THAT? He only did that because he knew I was watching, didn’t he?”

We continued to chat about the awesomeness of that vehicle when I looked in my rear view mirror again. “What kind of car is that?” I asked.

“Are you kidding me? ARE YOU FREAKIN KIDDING ME? THAT’S A NEW BENTLEY! IT’S LIKE A ROLLS ROYCE … What kind of magical place is this?”

“This, my dear, is West Vancouver. Welcome to the Land of Rich People.”

I loved that he was blown away. And I really love that he forgot to be too cool to care about me seeing his excitement.

And then? Then we started winding our way up the mountain. And it was foggy. So foggy that our visibility was about 3 car lengths. “This is nice and dangerous, eh?”
“What is?”
“To be on a winding road when you can’t see anythi…”

All of a sudden we were blinded by sunlight. We had broken through the oppression of fog and cloud and we were on the top of the world. It was spectacular. And I want to sell my house and move to a mountain. As we continued our climb, we reached a look out point that, that, that, well, rendered us both speechless. “I’m dropping you off, and coming back here to take some photos,” I said to him as we rounded the corner and found ourselves looking down on an ocean of cloud waves that were illuminated by the biggest, brightest, most golden sun I had ever seen.

(If I can’t live in a southern state that ends with an “a”, I think I should live on the peak of a mountain. I could be very happy immersed in that kind of sunlight.)

So, true to my word, I did drop him off, and I did go back half-way down the mountain to that look out point, and I did take 287 pictures with a crowd other (mostly Canon) camera owners. As I sat there, on the stone ledge, waiting for the money shot of the setting sun, surrounded by strangers also anticipating the upcoming sun-set-show; I was completely at peace.

Cypress has a new lodge in anticipation of the Olympics. I am sitting in a spacious, warm, rustically decorated cafeteria, next to a huge window where I can watch boarders and skiers gracefully descend the slopes while typing on my laptop which is plugged in to the wall outlet beside me. Does it get any better than this? I think not.

(That was written at 7 pm on Friday night at the lodge. Here are a few of my fav pics:)
Drew in the parking lot:

Dragging the board is cool:
Love this kid:

The Lookout:

The SUN!
And beneath it?
Clouds and Fog. SO pretty from this angle:

I was expecting that Philly Cream Cheese angel to go floating by:

I did alot of people watching:

There is a HUGE sprawling city under that fluffy stuff:

Thousands of dollars worth of photography equipment in the little look out:

Checking out each other's shots:

Interesting technique:

And the sun started slipping behing the mountain:

It was messin with my mind that those were not ocean waves of water, but waves of clouds. I'm so used to taking sunset photos on the beach. And this is no beach. THERE IS A CITY UNDER THERE!

And looking in the other direction? Mount Baker:

Obligatory dog shot so readers can go awwwwwhhh:

And the sun is down. And those aren't waves of water:

And the sunset paparazzi just kept on snapping:

Isn't she adorable? She saw the jet stream in the sky and thought it was a rocket:

Three things I'm thankful for:
1. I saw the sun today and it was good.
2. Even though we can't see it everyday, the sun is there, higher up than the clouds.
3. I just had a really great day.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing the fog pix. My daughter and I were up Seymour, without a camera and I was trying to explain to others, the next day, how the fog looked. So I sent them to your blog. Linda