Lake Merced, near the southern boundary of San Francisco, one morning of Thanksgiving weekend. Fog in, out, in, out again. It was a certain kind of morning that urged a certain timeless treatment of the images … or at least, a treatment evoking an earlier time in photography’s history. Strangest and most wonderful to me were the tall unfamiliar rooftops rising in the melting fog. In their stairstepping vagueness they seemed like something from an ancient civilization.
The parched Bay Area is grateful, heading into America’s day of Thanksgiving, for any rain we can get. It was coming; the weather folks said so, the doppler radar said so. But for a couple of hours after the storm was expected to start on Tuesday morning, it was all expectation and no precipitation. Birds sensed it, fall leaves tossed in sudden wind, clouds gathered, but … nothing. It finally did rain, for a bit, and temperatures dropped, but now we’re facing a weekend of crisp winter sun. For a moment before the clouds opened, though, the skies played with a dramatic duality: the dark stormy look that tradition defines as “threatening,” and a shard of rainbow to remind us that the threat, in a period of drought, is also a promise.