Saturday, May 14, 2005


Talk around the campfire has turned to the clarity of Mexican skies and earlier sightings of satellites, but for the present the whole sky is covered with clouds. A hole opens in the clouds, basically right above us, and stars are visible through it. Paige looks up and says "hey, there's a satellite now". "And there's another one! And another one! And another one!" And then every star in the sky is moving in formation, a battalion of satellites in synchronous slide across the sky, and Paige stumbles backwards as the earth spins out from underneath her feet. From her new vantage point on solid ground it's apparent that the stars are stationary and it is the hole in the clouds that is moving, but for a second there either the whole universe was circling the drain or there was some serious UFO activity over Baja.

I remember being at a place called Big Rock in the mountains outside of SLC and looking up into this perfectly clear sky and the first object my eyes focused on, no brighter than any other thing in the sky, was a satellite... for a moment this one satellite was the only fixed point in the whole universe, and everything else was streaking across the sky. The direction the stars were moving made it seem like the ground was turning out from underneath me on the side where the mountain plummeted down, and I didn't feel like I was standing on the earth, I felt like I was slipping off of it, hanging off of the edge... I dropped and grabbed a large rock and held on until a more useful viewpoint came along. (I don't know why I thought the rock wouldn't fly into space.)

Sometimes it seems like throughout my whole life I've either been actively seeking out a new viewpoint or just holding on for dear life and waiting for a more useful one to come along.