Liz and I piled a few people into our cars and headed off into the local hills for a moonlight walk. The local parks have a 10:00 curfew, but we didn't let that stop us. However, when we finally stopped at a likely trailhead, the two police cars parked there gave us some pause.
"Closed at ten o'clock, folks," they told us, waving us on.
So we drove to a different place and parked on the street and walked in.
The moon was lovely, the path relatively free of roots, and the night warmed in a way that only East Bay nights seem to after a cold afternoon. Jori fell off the path. A bit later, he jumped out from behind a tree, roaring, frightening his friend Isabel and falling into a hole, dragging her along after.
He's not a quiet young man.
Liz, on the other hand, reached a natural altered state and playfully danced with her moonshadow, quietly infused with the magic of the moment.
We eventually made our way to a labyrinth there. They way down looked especially treacherous in the dark. I thought of the people my courageous brother rescues quite regularly from their bad choices, and carefully considered the course of the next several minutes. Out of the moonlight, my eyes adjusted to the deep shadows and I saw the path rather more clearly. Everyone else went a stupid way, so I hurried to the base of the cliff they were approaching from above and waved them off.
More accurately, when they finally heard me below them, they realized that the other way down was better.
Betsy, Jori, Nicholas and I left everyone else in the labyrinth and came home. I wasn't really done being out, but I'd had a sufficiency, and all four of us realized we weren't willing to sacrifice functionality the next day for more fun in the night.
Betsy and Jori are such a welcome part of our community. We know they are traveling, and sometimes we get preemptively sad thinking about their departure sometime in the middle of 2009. Xena summed it up nicely: "We're their summertime."
I wonder if Summer looks as fondly on our delight, we who celebrate her warmth and freedom, or as wistfully at our eagerness for the joys of Autumn.