Runner and Fog | Mark Lindsay

A sneaky, little heat wave is sinking its tendrils into our neighborhood. These nasty things barely announce themselves. The change starts off with an imperceptible shift in the breeze. The branches of our weeping birches go this way instead of that. Or they swirl around indecisively until they decide that the ocean air is no longer welcome. Like a songbird being stalked by a raptor, suddenly I look around, head darting from side to side. "Shit!" I hate heat waves. Give me a drippy, rainy, foggy, gloomy day anytime. I look at anyone who says they love the heat with bemusement. I just don't understand it.

Just a few days ago I was cheerfully adding layers to shivering torso as I ascending into the headlands fog. I was wrapped in a cocoon of cottony silence. Moisture condensed on my camera lens, coalescing into big drops that ran from top to bottom of the glass, ruining every photo until I noticed them and wiped them off. No matter. Photography in the fog is so glorious it is worth risking a lens or two.

One can hear other hikers before seeing them up there in the foggy headlands. The fog muffles the chatter into the kind of murmurs one hears in a small church. Encounters are brief as these specters emerge and disperse back into the swirly universe of white essence. I try to photograph them at their points of departure, to see if I can click the shutter at the moment of their disappearance.

Back to the new heatwave. My mind snaps to present as a hit of stale, valley air comes into the studio. In a few hours it will be 100 degrees. No fog anywhere near these parts will save the day. The cats, particularly the black ones, will find a cool, tile floor and lie low and still. Cats are generally smarter than I am so I'll follow their lead. We'll all lie low together until the fog graces us again. The headlands will have to wait for me.