I love fog. Growing up here on the Cape, I find it energizing.
Yet fog can distort things, too. It can blur one’s view, disorient one’s sense of direction and place in the landscape.
The other day as I pulled into the parking lot at Forest Beach, I could see the fog rolling in from the sea, billowing and swirling as it came. Creeping up and over the dunes and into the marsh. Muting the sun’s rays, dissipating everything that is familiar to me in a marsh I know so well.
I have also found that the fog can bring new things to light; even unexpected things, together.
As I looked across the marsh, I was taken with a group of ospreys and crows.
Ordinarily, an osprey will fiercely defend its nesting pole against anything coming near. Yet here they were, ospreys and crows, sharing one of the “fish hawks’ ” favorite perches.
As I walked along the marsh’s edge I noticed a few things that just the day before, in brighter sunshine, I had completely overlooked!
Like this swamp rose mallow, peeping through a thicket of lime green leaves and cat o’ nine tail stalks.
And this pokeweed, the blossoms hanging heavy and just getting ready to bloom.
I saw a cluster of nightshade, it’s delicate petals so vibrant and deeply purple against a foggy frame. It took my breath away.
A cluster of poison ivy, changing from green to crimson almost seemed to whisper, Time’s are changing, autumn’s a-comin’.
I asked the new batch of baby bunnies what they had found in the fog.
They told me that the damp, cooling air had drawn them out of their nest to a new patch of ground, where they were delighted to find tasty greens to nibble on.
And although they tried to deny it, I looked like they had also found a real spring in their step.
Just like mine. 😉
Over at the Mill I could barely make out the ospreys overhead.
Yet I knew they were out there. They called out to one another, their cries piercing the foggy air as they brought their fresh catches home to the nest.
Across the flats, two great egrets were trying to ignore all things osprey.
Slowly striding through the grass, they seemed to be reveling in the murky landscape; stretching out their necks and with keen eyes looking for signs of swishy fish tails.
A familiar friend atop Gull Cottage reminded me that the fishing’s always best when the fog rolls in.
He told me it’s because the crabs can’t see you coming for them in the fog.
I guess he would know.
By the time I got back around to the parking lot at Forest Beach, the fog had all but covered everything in the marsh from view.
But that’s what fog does.
It can sometimes make you feel disoriented, perhaps even a bit lost.
The next time you feel lost in the fog, maybe take a deep breath.
And look around.
You might just discover something new, thanks to fog, something you might not have seen without it.