The sky’s the limit

Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

Tired today. It’s my own fault, really. I stayed out way too late last night.

It was a beautiful night, and the road to Pyramid Lake was fairly unpopulated, although for a Thursday night, the lakeshore itself was unusually dotted with flashlights.

I wasn’t there for anything illicit—just a clear view of the Perseid meteor shower—and while the drumbeats northwest of us were a poor substitute for the tribal rhythms of Burning Man, the medley of satellites, stars and airplanes above us gave the whole evening a Black Rock City feel. There was a scent of sage in the air, but it wasn’t any smudge smoldering to excise spirits.

My buddy had surprisingly never been to Pyramid Lake before, so I felt lucky to introduce him to the lake jewel. The breeze was chilling.

We’d arrived early. The height of starfall was supposed to arrive around 2 a.m., but as a couple of professionals, even midnight is too late to be awake for a 6 a.m. rising. My friend had one of those apps on his cell phone that showed the constellations whichever direction the phone was pointed.

The night was so dark that when Jupiter rose, the planet actually created a reflection on the lake’s surface. The orchestral maneuvers above lived up to their billing. The Milky Way stood out like a flaw in a diamond. Meteors burned across the sky, inscribing a scratch of white that flared and faded, with the tail somehow flaring again at times.

On the road by 11:45, and as I stood on my back deck off Skyline Boulevard and watched the sky through the towering maples and pines and waited for the arrival of my girlfriend, Joy, the fireworks continued above me.

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