"What do you plan to do with your one, wild, precious life?" -Mary Oliver

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Nothing Boiling On The Stove

Now I know what snow fog is. At first I thought my windows were steamed up, you know, like a kettle of water was boiling on the stove. Then I realized it was simply….very….foggy. The sky to the east was faintly colored through the gauze of white, a blushing bride, and the road was only indicated by the steep snow banks that line the side, indecipherable bumps in the morning light. Snow fog is unusual and disconcerting, like thunder in a snowstorm, or hail in a heatwave. But it’s deathly quiet, unlike either of the other two natural phenomena.

I understand why so many mysteries take place in a foggy bottom. Something sinister could be happening across the road, or in the road, or even in my own backyard, and I’d never know. In the fog, no one can hear you scream.

This all seems to connect with the chapter I'm currently editing, which begins:

Up where there was more water than land, Boyd crossed through the southern section of the Algonquin Provincial Park. The trees got taller as the road narrowed, and the sun dimmed behind the thickening cloud cover until its exact location was impossible to pinpoint in the gunmetal sky. He pulled off the road and studied the map, comparing it with the computer directions and Lucy’s scribbled notes. He had to be getting close to the camp, much further east and he would be in Quebec. He rubbed his stomach. He’d eaten the last of his beef jerky, and breakfast at the diner across the street from the Starlight Motel was long gone. He had stopped again for gas and bought a liter of water, and that was gone too. Thinking about it made him want to pee, and he climbed out and aimed an arc at the center of the road, melting a circle of snow the size of a balloon.

I feel like I could be there with him, lost in the middle of nowhere in the Algonquin Provincial Park.

13 comments:

Anne Gallagher said...

Snow fog. Regular fog. Love love love fog. It's so alluring and scary at the same time.

Love the excerpt. Love the fact he pee's. Great job. Makes him human.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Anne,
You're exactly right, alluring and scary at the same time, which can be good in our writing as well. Thanks so much! Yes,I like to think he's very human, so I'm glad that came across for you.

Frances Garrood said...

A lovely description. And the peeing reminds me of something I was telling someone only today: the occasion when my daughter got caught short on the motorway, pulled in to the hard shoulder and peed into a biscuit tin, put the lid on and then took it home. I've always wondered why (why she took it home that is. Not why she peed).

Men are lucky. their arrangements are so much more convenient.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

You had me at snow fog. What an eerie, haunting sound those words have together. Your writing in both the post and the excerpt pulled me right in. Lovely and mysterious. (Funny, but I just wrote a fog scene in my WIP yesterday.)

rosaria said...

Love the excerpt. Is this your work? Are you sharing more? I'd love to read more.....

Judy Croome said...

I'm with Anne. Whatever kind of fog I love it. (Ever since I saw the delicious Liam Neeson in Rob Roy, the fog swirling about his kilt!

Snow fog has such a mysterious ring to it.

Your opening line is great - a lyrical lead-in with a hint of danger.
Judy (South Africa)

Anthony Duce said...

I love snow fog, actual any fog, especially in the morning before the sun burns it off. Thanks for the small part of your story… I like it a lot. Such a wonderful place, Algonquin Park. Wish I was there in winter, looking at the fog.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Frances,
Thank you. That's a funny story. Yes, Men have it on us in this regard.

Tricia,
Thanks! Glad you liked it. Yes fog is fun to pencil into a scene . . . so many possibilities.

Rosaria,
Yes, it's my current wip. I haven't really shared much of this one. I think I posted the first 3-4 pages a long time ago. I'd have to check my archives. I hadn't even intended to post the excerpt when I started writing about the fog, but it seemed to fit. I'm about ready to trust it to a couple of faithful readers. Thanks for your interest. I'd love to have you read more sometime.

Judy,
Thank you so much. Love those kilts!

Tony,
Thank you! It was very beautiful this morning with the trees all covered in frost. All foggy and still and beautiful. I wish I could write as beautifully.

Gary... said...

I miss seeing days like that. Truth be told, in Tucson there's not much change in the weather. It's sunny most days with little variation. It's as bland as the sand, scrub brush and saguaro cacti.

Thanks for the brief vision of softer and mysterious arenas.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Gary,
Hi! Thank you, too, for the glimpse of a warmer clime. Though, I think the sameness would wear on me. Thank you for visiting me.

foldingfields said...

Fog is creepy, but so good for imagining!! (blushing bride, indeed).

Yvonne Osborne said...

Sarah,
Thank you!

Nevine said...

Yvonne, waiting for you to post about the book and will come back to comment properly. But congratulations to you! What an exciting day for all of us!

I remember we "talked" when we first won in the contest, back in the fall!!!

I'll be back...

Nevine