One hour south of Tok
Takhini Hot Springs just outside Whitehorse
Campground one hour south of Whitehorse
Its difficult to be driving hard into fall. Trees are stripped bare – our headlights strike the darkness --White Birch limbs wave back. I feel guilty leaving these thin bodies to face winter.
Often we pull into campgrounds when it’s too late to appreciate our surroundings. I’m starting to get it: just believe, you’ll see in the morning. With dawn, rivers of condensation in the cab-over bed draw streaks of darkness and dazzle gradually becoming lakes and trees. And rivers and sandbars and lakes and trees. If it weren’t so beautiful I would have to admit its predictable… Is that how someone else perceives my paintings? Predictable? Do they see the dark aspect, the way I search for light against the hegemony of trees, of darkness. I am constantly on the look-out for a compelling reflection, a fringe of light against the hem of trees that could be rendered in ink or oils. The camera bounces from hand to hand. Michael is often announcing, “I got some really good ones for you. Asia paintings all the way!”
We stop for lunch and Jake spins around on his mountain bike. Michael chases after on his ancient Schwinn, football in the bread basket. I discover a new use for picnic tables. In the Canadian provincial parks they are smooth and wide, a solid sheet of plywood. Perfect for yoga.
Michael is doing most of the driving. Which concerns me, because this is the kind of driving I’m happy to do. Whereas I’m a complete weenie in cities. I usually get the wheel with afternoon tea, then singing….and then I start speeding up. “Hey baby, can you lighten up? You’re going 75!” I’m so happy on a long country road.
Jake collected leaf and twig samples in the Yukon – willow, spruce, labrador – same as home. But now we are in Jack Pine country, sweet smelling yellow grass, aspen, deer prints.