Good morning, Bowzart, Murray, and Vaughn;
Neat stories of the Pacific Northwest. Yes, and even more impressive are the introspective observations.
It is a treat to learn of others who have spent time inside a tent hoping that there might be an hour or two of slackening in the rain. One of the pleasurable experiences three years ago was after spending 5 days and 4 nights in the rain hiking around Mount Saint Helens in August. When we got home, I had to dry the ground cloth and the fly of the tent. The body of the tent, and its contents, had stayed dry.
I did have a 35 mm camera in the pack with me, but the hoped for sweeping vistas of the mountains never came out of the mist and fog.
So, rain. I just got back from a week in central Mexico. It is so disappointing to be back in the land of perpetual Zone IV. What was it doing when we got off the airplane? Would you believe? Rain...
I prefer to think of those clouds as a tens of thousands of square miles soft box, producing an all enveloping, diaphanous rain forest light :)
Some wonderful thoughts Bowzart. I agree with you that people take far less notice of things than they should (and we all suffer from it from time to time, it's difficult to open up) and don't step out of their comfort zone enough.
Let me share two of my experiences:
In the beginning of the nineties, when I was still studying biology, at some summer day in the evening I was restless and decided to go for an evening / night walk (something I actually do quite regularly). This time, a beautiful night with strong moonlight, I was bold, and decided to go for a longer 5 km hike outside of the city I lived, even though it was already 23.45 hours (I was living at it's borders). Going into the countryside around it, passing a grave yard and walking past a canal, fields with horses and cows, I was amazed at how much life was going on! I could hear frogs, horses grazing, birds flying over and even discovered a hole noisy colony of herons nesting in the grave yard's circumventing high tree range.
It was wonderful... and not a single sole in sight of course!
Another more recent "experience" is that I started making sketches outside. Now I have had quite some experience taking drawing classes, but had never before been bold enough to just sit down in the middle of a town, and start drawing. It was another wonderful and contemplative experience. After the first hesitations and worries (can I do it?, what will people think?), I just "let go" and let my mind wonder and my eyes and hand do the work. I came to rest... and people starting showing interest, I had some wonderful talks and experiences out of that!