A night of 1000 scents

It’s a warm (49 degrees) November night with a waxing moon and not a hint of wind.  Fog has settled in beautiful shallow patterns over dewey lawns and meadows, creating a glow beneath the streetlights and a halo around the moon.  With no air movement, scents accumulate where they are created, and it is possible to experience the world as a dog might.  We walk beneath a towering conifer and get a whiff of cedar air.  Piles of leaves exude an earthy richness, with bitter tannins under oaks or more spicy scents under trees we could not identify in the dark.  Some folks are eating popcorn, their evening snack poignantly announced in the nearby air.  Others are doing laundry, wafting out the sweet but artificial scents of various soaps.  Ebba and John have a fire going, leaving a hint of woodsmoke along Nash.  When there are no stronger smells, there is a soft conifery freshness, the signature smell of Oregon winter settling in from the mountain forests, perhaps with a tinge of the not-so-distant ocean.  We may tire of our rain and fog, but in moisture there is life.

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