We camped along a wild and rugged stretch of the Oregon coast last week. Cape Blanco is the westernmost tip of the state and if you head directly west from there, the next land you hit will be somewhere near the northern islands of Japan. The wind comes in hard and fast with nothing to slow it down for 5,000 miles.
There’s a meteorological phenomenon called the marine layer that happens at the coast. When the cool ocean air meets the warm landmass, clouds form. They can sit offshore as a wall, just above the water. But if the wind shifts, it can move over the land and swallow it up.
When you wake in the morning, you might be wrapped in mist, but after a trip to the bathhouse to brush your teeth, it might be sunny again…and after fixing your morning coffee, the fog could just as well return. Some days, the fog settles in and it never leaves. But even then, drive a few miles inland, and it’s sunny all over again.
It’s simple science, but here’s the weird part.
Even when you know the sun is shining a few miles away, that fog can still consume you. The damp air will chill you to the core. The wind will beat you up. It is the world you know…the world you are experiencing…and it is hard to imagine anything else.
We do that as humans. I don’t see racism in my day to day, so it can’t be that bad. What sort of parents would send their kids across the border alone in this dangerous world? I kept my job through the pandemic…it wasn’t so terrible.
But that’s the weather above your head. Have you looked to see what it’s doing elsewhere? We get so consumed in our own marine layer that it is hard to see what is happening inland.
The sun may be shining on you, but is it raining on your neighbor today?