Sunrise and stars on Easter Island

> I’m falling behind on blogging…but there is so much to share that I don’t want to skip.  So, here is a blog about Easter Island taken from my personal journal<
Upon [our travel mate] Vienna’s  suggestion, Day 3 (a beautiful day) began at 6:30 a.m. when we set off to catch the sunrise over the 15 moai that line the coast just beyond the quarry.  when we arrived, we all scattered to find the best spots to snap photos.  My camera fell back in Singapore, locking the zoom part of the lens into a very narrow zoom, so I headed straight for the back of the rocky field where I could catch all 15 moai.  This was a beautiful decision it turned out, not because of the pictures I came up with, but because of a moment of solitude, away from everyone.  I sat on a volcanic rock, one of many that was likely once a part of a village house.  From my perch I listened to this most peculiar and eerie landscape awake.  I could even imagine the statues waking.  Just before sunrise, as the darkness was tinting with blue I listened to the sound of crickets and the raspy screech of night hawks making their final catches of the night.  At that moment the island felt timeless…or perhaps crystallized in the past.  The light was still dim enough to blot out the others present at that field, accept of course the giants of stone.

The hawks began to quiet with the coming of color to the sky.  Orange and pink peaked in from behind a few clouds, foreshadowing the beautiful day it would be.  We lingered there with the moai and the sky until it was about time to return our rental car.

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This was our last night, and at last a clear one, so we wrapped up the day with star-gazing.  We walked along a stretch of road in between our remote campsite and town, stopping at a bank that seemed most hidden from lights.  We laid there for awhile looking at the strange southern sky and its jewel: the Southern Cross.  An arm of the milky way jutted into the sky too, spilling across the canvas of stars like the spackling of spray-paint.  After awhile the boys went back to camp while us girls staid with Annie to give her more time to photograph the stars.

Our lives have changed so much since high school and we are different people than we were at 16, but as I stood in the cold, gazing at the stars while my sister turned a camera into her canvas, it might as well have been the summer years ago when Annie was testing out her new SLR camera. We had risen at 3 or 4 in the morning to catch the peak hours of a meteor shower.  After counting 500 or more, Annie began her work: her artistry, and I stood by as her assistant, holding the lens or propping the camera while she held down the shutter release.  I remember fighting impatience and cold and acknowledging how special the moment was.  I remember making myself understand how incredible the stars were, and even more so, how incredible it is to be a sister.

This was a different hemisphere now.  A different camera and a different stage of life, but it completed some kind of circle for me.  I added it to the bank of moments I’ll never forget.

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