Friday, 19 September 2008

Shadows, part II

The sun has just risen above the clouds over Hilo Town to the east and the early-morning commute for many is just beginning, while for some of us the work day is coming to an end. The observatory is being shut down and secured for the daylight hours after performing flawlessly overnight and I take a last opportunity, at least for a few hours, to take in the sights of a Mauna Kea sunrise.

Only a handful of tourists are here this morning, they would have had to have left a couple of hours ago to ensure making it to the summit in time for sunrise, and this time they are all on the eastern side of the summit ridge watching a new day begin in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. I've seen a few sunrises over the years and can't help being intrigued more by the sight in the west - the shadow of Mauna Kea again, this time much sharper than its evening cousin and dwarfing Hualalai volcano to the left. Hualalai is potentially one of the most dangerous volcanoes in the U.S. and threatens Kailua Town on the west coast of Hawai`i, but it looks so insignificant this morning.

I wonder, if I look hard enough, could I see my own shadow in the distance?

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