The best thing about working at the University is dashing down the hill after my shift and getting home in time to get on the water while there's still light in the sky, even in winter. Now that it's over a month past Solstice, the daylight doesn't fade so quickly. But it can still get dark fast for other reasons!
At 2:00 pm when I left work, the day was a bright overcast, the kind that makes my daughter squint and reach for a visor or a baseball cap. By 2:30 pm, when I finished teetering down the hill (though others may run up and down the steep hill, using it for a giant Stairmaster, well, that's just not possible with my absence of a sense of balance) and chatting with my partner at our driveway as he went to take his class, I could tell the clouds were moving. Checking on the dogs and cats took a few moments, then I got into my wetsuit and inflated my Dragonfly kayak. At 3:00, I was at the little rock garden in Cadboro Bay, watching the breeze changing on the water.
It's amazing how the weather can change here on the West Coast in about half an hour! I went around Stein Island, and felt the breeze lift into a wind, as a weather front moseyed on in. Yep, the same weather front that today's local weather & news report suggests will be dropping a warm, snow-melting rain all over Vancouver tonight and tomorrow. Some weather fronts show themselves in a line of clouds across a clear blue sky. This one blurred its way into the bay, like tea leaves leaching colour into my new clear glass teapot.
No grief, no problem. Just nice swells about six or eight inches high where half an hour ago there had been smooth water. The breeze blew stiffer and stiffer, giving the strong impression that there would be more and more wind. I rode the wind and waves back to the beach, passing a couple pairs of harlequin ducks who were fishing here and there.
Walked back to the house with the inflatable on my shoulder turning like a weather vane. Indoors looking out, I saw the willow tree whipping as the wind came up to the force of a small craft warning. It'll be blowing a gale tonight.