After being totally unprepared for last night’s great sunset (who knew the best light would be after the sun had all but set?), our goal for the evening is to catch great sunset pictures. (I’m turning Lane into a photographer.) I stake out a spot just below the lodge while Lane heads out to Bright Angel Point.
I thought it might be busy and was afraid I’d really be a jerk to hog such a prime spot, so was prepared to occasionally cede my carefully chosen location. I needn’t have worried. It is a long wait until sunset and I am pretty much alone. My solitude is occasionally broken by one or two visitors (I spend a long time chatting with a pleasant man from the Netherlands and then encounter an unpleasant American family who start throwing rocks into the canyon until I explain that there are trails and people down there – the look of sheer horror on the man’s face is almost enough to allow me to forgive his utter stupidity), but most of the time I free to contemplate the changing light in peace.
People begin to join me only when the sun actually begins to set. Go figure. By now it is too late to take pictures without a tripod, so I stay in my carefully chosen spot and visit while darkness slowly descends. Among those who now join me is a funny, boisterous, youngish man who swears he’s a priest from Brooklyn. He even has an ID card to prove it. He has a French accent, a slightly irreverent attitude (he says not all priests are old and dull), and a large collection of tall tales. He is very, very funny. He says he has driven here from Sedona (about 6 hours away) just to show some friends sunset over the Grand Canyon and that they are driving back yet tonight. As the sun burnishes the sky with rose and gold before sinking into darkness we agree that God is very, very good.
As the sun disappears the conversation goes with it. We stay a long time after the sun has vanished, gazing into the moon-washed canyon, marveling at what God has shared with us.
Later I will find that Lane has been busy taking his own pictures from the other side of the canyon.
The partial rainbow I had observed was lovely to watch, but Lane actually captured a glimpse of it as he awaited the sunset.