A scorcher of a day led to storm clouds gathering, a light breeze whispering, and rain drops spluttering just as I headed out on the first of the evening dog walks. As Oliver and I rounded the corner at the end of the block, I stopped in my tracks and let the pleasure wash over me - a brilliant rainbow, wider than wide, embraced the bay, its end planted firmly on the sunset-drenched little white ferry just leaving the dock of the island across the waters.
It was a Kodak Moment. But I had no camera. I couldn't share it. And I was walking the Slowest Dog On Earth. Oliver takes approximately forty minutes to go around the block. Seriously. He takes dainty little steps that remind me of ancient Japanese movies when women had their feet bound and tiptoed in tiny steps behind their husband or father. Except Oliver doesn't hurry as the women in the movies did. He takes tiny steps in s l o w, s l o w motion. And stops to check out the pee-mail every few feet. Sigh.
And so by the time we got back home and I leashed up Sadie and Charley for the next walk of the evening, dusk was falling, the rain had stopped, and the setting sun was once more hidden behind purple clouds. But I grabbed the camera anyway.
And I'm glad I did. Because even though these pictures can't capture the amazing colours and textures and scents of the evening, I hope they help relay some of the magic that was tonight. For just as we turned away from the sea wall and headed back up the hill, the sun slipped out from its curtain of cloud for an encore.
And what an encore it was!
Rainbows, double ones, spread across the bay from side to side. Golden sunset on white boats and yellow hillsides. And brilliant orange fireball clouds all around.
The dogs and I went back to the little park near the wharf to watch nature's lightshow. A crowd of people were there, ironically waiting for a movie-in-the-park night that was supposed to begin at dusk. Instead, families were treated to a show far more spectacular, far more awe-inspiring than any Hollywood-produced performance could be.
When we finally returned home, the neighbours were out on the street, watching in awe as a rainbow trailed right into a brilliant orange puff of cloud, like some multi-coloured comet hurtling to the earth.
And as I came through my gate into my back yard, the whole sky was ablaze with orange light, sunset on clouds washed with the rain.
When I lived in the Northwest Territories, I saw the most amazing displays of Northern Lights, displays I will never forget. Tonight's sky rivaled those experiences.
My photos don't do it justice. The images, however, are firmly rooted in my mind.
A lightshow like no other. An encore worthy of a standing ovation.