Tiring of eating in a Chinese restaurant with coughing booth neighbors, I decided to do something different tonight.
I bought a Chinese carry out meal; stopped and got some coffee at the only fast food establishment in Long Beach--one where the gals have learned to provide quadruple cream at the outset--and then drove to the Seaview Beach approach where I had recorded the moonset video last month. (I've had 178 hits now, thank you m'am.)
I wanted to be quiet and alone for the space of an hour.
November's moon was floating languidly in and out of clouds in the eastern sky, but she was still in the waxing gibbous stage and wasn't providing much light as I stared into the hypnotically beautiful and rhythmically sighing distant surf.
The tourist season is definitely over. I was alone. I was quietly roll up your window and lock the doors of the truck alone.
Don't laugh. There are black bears on the Long Beach Peninsular and I didn't want one that smelled my food to come and attempt to share it with me.
I began the meal as the last vestiges of twilight in a darkening western sky provided faint illumination. I was able to separate the tofu from the water chestnuts at first.
And heck, my eyes would grow accustomed to the darkness as it fell, I told myself.
Not necessarily so.
A few minutes into my Chinese fare, I was sitting in inky darkness. There are no street lights at the Seaview approach. I mean, it was DARK!
Attempting to impale bits of broccoli, tofu, and snow peas by touch and with only a flimsy plastic fork quickly became a challenge and a chore.
I reluctantly switched on the interior light of the Ranger, which lent about as much ambiance as a law officer's flashlight shined into my window would have.
But I finished and enjoyed my meal by the light of that 12-volt bulb that works sometimes; flickers at others; and ceases to work altogether occasionally.
Next time I'm in one of those home and hearth establishments that sell scented candles, I will acquire one, along with a small lighter, and keep them in my truck for the next meal by the surf.
What do you think? I always liked vanilla candles. Would vanilla go well with Chinese food?
Or should I go with a pumpkin pie spice candle?
D. Grant Haynes
November 7, 2011