Then December happened.
In November, the days of grey started to outnumber the days of sun. By mid-December, I couldn’t remember the last time I had been on a hike in the sunshine. Oddly, my peaceful retreat was giving me bouts of anxiety: any time the sun shone through, I panicked, quickly searching for the perfect hike, believing this would be our one and only shot at walking in the sunshine before we left.
The roads were clear, but a half hour and thirty miles later, the skies were not.
I was oddly hopeful, even though I am fully aware that, generally speaking, clouds travel west, not east. So it’s not like the sun would follow us from Portland. I just had to hope there was another break in the clouds somewhere over the Ocean that would reach us at some point in our journey on the mountain.
The clouds had decided to stick around, and when we met a forest ranger there, she confirmed that indeed we were at the lookout. We just couldn’t Look. Out.
Out there in the distance can be a glorious sight, but what really matters is right here, right now, which is all we really have.