Took off quick, shortly after 5 am, to escape the lights and look for stars. Ara was along, wondering if it was a good idea or not. I wasn’t sure either, but in for a penny, in for a dime. She felt the same. We had an hour before I had to consider work. Not enough time to do it proper and head for the hills. We went down, instead of up, and tore a path down the lake, under Swansea. The lights were all around. It didn’t matter. When we stopped it was dark enough. And cold enough at minus 27. I could barely make out the Milky Way. Mars was over my shoulder above the railway tracks. Most of Taurus was down, along with Pleiades. The Beehive was there and so was Aldebaren. The Milky Way had turned sideways and I couldn’t stop looking. The lake groaned like whale music. My fingers were cold and my boots turned to blocks. Ara was glad to get a boost back into the truck. We got off in Windermere and doubled back on the highway, stopping at Horton’s for coffee and timbits. I took a good hot slug and gave a bit to Ara. She smelled it before eating, as if I would give her something she wouldn’t eat. She gobbled it and I spilled coffee on my chin at the damn stop light (talk about light pollution). By 7, Ara was back asleep on the couch and I was at work, none the worse for wear.