Foggy Nights, Foggy Days

I came home last night after playing D&D, and discovered that the road home was fogged in. For those who haven’t been there, our road curves around the side of a hill (mountain to you Easterners), and it doesn’t have much use for things like curbs or sidewalks. In fact, it doesn’t have much use for lanes, and there’s always a bit of negotiation when you meet someone coming the other way. Mostly you use available driveways or wide spots, but that’s a different story. Turning off the main road is always an act of faith, because the road plunges downwards and you can’t really see that there’s a road there until you make the turn. Last night, there wasn’t a road there, just a wall of white. I navigated (very slowly) by keeping track of the right edge, which is the uphill side, until I discovered the problem with that strategy. Driveways. I was well down somebodies drive when I realized that I really shouldn’t be going downhill quite that much. Slowly, very slowly, I backed on to the main(?) road and tried again. There was a driveway to the right, so my “right edge” strategy didn’t work. It took plowing ahead until I found the right edge again before I got going. In fact, at one point I started down that same driveway again! If I’d had a flashlight in the car I would have gotten out and checked on foot. After today I’ll have one. The one good thing was the total lack of other vehicles. Actually, as I come to think of it, the road could have been covered with other vehicles and I’d never have known.

Once I got home, the view outside our windows, which is normally filled with lights from the valley, was totally black. This morning, the fog had settled in the valley and it looked as though you could walk to the mountains on it. In an hour, it was gone. Bright and clear again.

For those with a more mundane bent, this sort of thing happens fairly frequently here. There’s an inversion layer over the Pacific that moves inland at night, bringing our normal nightly overcast. Sometimes it starts dropping, and the overcast layer becomes fog as it sweeps down from the mountains to the valleys. I just happened to be coming home when it was around the 1000 foot level. The situation is not uncommon. My being out in it was.

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