Clouds of Stars

During childhood vacations to the Northwoods of Wisconsin, when there was barely more than a Piggly Wiggly and a Pamida, I could lay at the end of my aunt’s dock which extended into a remote lake and see the Milky Way stretching out above me.

At present I live in one of the most befouled places on the earth, in terms of light pollution. So when I finalized plans to visit Yosemite this year, although seeing massive trees was number one on my to do list, a close second was finding a place where I could once again see the Milky Way.

To stand still and see a vast expanse of sky and stars stretching out before you—it makes it hard to care about traffic or salary or fashion or really anything at all except pine trees and fresh air and free rein to explore.

According to an online map representing current world light pollution levels as a garish rainbow, seeing the Milky Way from my aunt’s dock wouldn’t be possible now.

How can anyone remain humble and reasonable without a daily reminder of of the enormity of existence beyond tiny human lives?

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