8:55 am. Because we moved the houseboat yesterday, the sun was in a different position in the sky this morning. The result was that it started beating on my face much earlier than it did yesterday morning. Since that's my signal to get up (and curse the sun), here I am, already showered and shaved before nine o'clock.
The night sky was spectacular last night. It made it worth going to bed before ten, just so I could watch the meteors streaking through the constellations. They were bigger and brighter than any I've seen in a long time, and the field of stars above us seemed to have added depth. All that changed when the moon made its appearance, of course. If I'd taken a book with me to the top deck, I could have read it by moonlight alone.
Out here on Shasta Lake there are many places to see the mountain. "The mountain" refers to Mount Shasta, the snow-capped peak that gives the area its name and dominates the landscape. It's far enough from the lake that you can't see it all the time, but there are places, well-known to veterans, where it rises majestically white above the lower points of the green and brown hills and mountains surrounding this huge expanse of water.
I saw the mountain four times on our brief cruise yesterday, and each time I felt the same sense of awe. Maybe that's because I'm not one of those veterans who knows where to look for it. It's always a happy accident when I see the mountain.