Day 2 of 21 Days to a Writing Habit
Growing up on the Canadian prairies one did not encounter fog very often. But then when you join the Navy, you get used to fog like it is just another day.
Today, I had to drive to Halifax from my home on Prince Edward Island. During the three hour drive, the fog was never far away. Drive-up into the fog, down into the fog, the fog skirting alongside the highway as it hung over the forests. It all depended on how far away from the water I was and how high I was above sea level.
During the last 20 minutes of the drive, from the airport into Halifax proper, the fog was the thick, wet fog that I remember so well from my time sailing in and out of Halifax harbour. Halifax fog isn’t the wispy fog one might find laying down in a valley bottom on a cool summer morning or hovering over a lake. No. This is the I can’t see a damn thing in front of my face fog. This is the so much moisture in the fog type of fog that soaks through your clothes quickly.
But Bill you live in Canada. How can you have fog in the winter? Well, it is the fault of the Atlantic Ocean. Water, especially large bodies of water like an ocean, are always warmer than the landmass it surrounds. That explains why the fog became thicker the closer I came to Halifax. And since Halifax harbour runs fairly far inland and is perpendicular to the coast all that warm water mass means the fog extends a fair distance inland.
Driving at night is easy compared to driving in Halifax fog. We were meeting our daughter for supper in a part of town where all the big box stores are located. You know the layout, various big box stores sandwiching smaller stores in between with stan alone restaurants on the other side of the parking lot. Usually, it is very easy to see the destination restaurant across the parking lot. Well, not so much in Halifax fog. The light from the restaurant sign penetrates about 3.8 feet into the fog. The silhouette of the restaurant can be seen from maybe 50’. So one ends up leaning forward over the steering wheel, squinting through the windshield trying to discern one’s destination, like squinting actually helps, trying to drive through the patchwork of a disjointed parking lot all the while glancing left and right to make sure no other squinting driver is going to plough right into you.
It seemed much easier sailing in and out of the harbour in this thick fog as the radar clearly told you where the land was as well as any other vessels out on the water. Plus you could listen for the low bellow of the foghorn of nearby vessels or a far off lighthouse, or the bell of a buoy you were passing along your track.
Where are your favourite foggy locations?
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