I am an Inspector of Sunsets


One late afternoon, after a swim I went for a walk in San Tan Mountain Park–together with Usery Park–one of my favorites. It felt great to be back. And it ended with a real happy ending–not the kind that some masseuses provide. The happy ending was a near divine sunset.

It started out as sunsets often do, with a whimper not a bang. Yet I have learned through my years of sunset inspecting, not to give up too soon. Henry David Thoreau called himself an inspector of snow storms; I call myself an inspector of sunsets. This was dandy.

A passerby who saw me setting up my tripod,  hollered out, “you’re going to have great pictures.” I was not sure she was right. Like J. Paul Getty said about money, who wanted “more” I wanted more too. I had hope, not confidence.

It started out dull and gray, but I noticed it had some cracks. I knew from past sunset experience that small cracks could allow great beauty to emerge. And it did. Like Leonard Cohen said, “There is a crack in everything and that’s how the light gets in.” That applied perfectly to this stunning sunset.

After the sun dropped behind the mountain, and then a soft yet powerful pink color emerged in the sky above where the sun had been, turning to crimson. It was a perfect pink smudge right behind a Saguaro cactus creating a lovely silhouette. So often the best sunsets occur after the sun has dropped out of view. Briefly, I was in paradise.

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