Tuesday, April 29, 2008

At night

Here in the Chicago suburbs, we don’t often get to see night as it really is. Street lights, house lights, and other decorative lighting produce a pinkish glow of ambient light all night long.

Our youngest daughter was in high school before she saw what night was really like. Our family was driving home from rural Wisconsin one evening. We traveled a road with no lights, save the headlights from our car. A black sky thick with stars followed us as we headed south toward suburbia.

“Look at all the stars!” she said.

“That’s what the sky looks like when you get away from the city lights,” I replied. “You see more stuff.”

I grew up in a small town where I saw more stuff in the night sky. As a young boy, I would sit outside at night, look up at the stars, and dream. About giant balls of burning gases that appeared as bright pinpoints. About the pictures and stories that my ancestors saw in those points of light. About where I would be in 20, 30, 50 years.

I now live in a place where I can only view a handful of stars that outshine the ambient pinkness of the night sky. I occasionally escape to places where the full intensity of the night can envelop me and I become a small boy all over again.

In between those times, I take in the ambient lights below.

Photo: Outlet mall tulip display, Huntley, Illinois. Click on picture to enlarge. Photograph © 2008 James Jordan.

3 comments:

tetsu said...

So nice....

Wanda said...

Absolutely beautiful....wonderful colors at night.

jose said...

Really good! Great capture and words