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coming up...
• Just a Barista
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Stroll with the Clouds (04/18/21)

A walk through the neighborhood, no matter where in the world we are at that time, is the normal thing to do every morning, with the purpose of being out-and-about when the sun rises.

Covid has kept those walks more local lately, and though we do look seriously forward to getting back to those adventures in different cities and neighborhoods of the world, our local jaunts still hold wonder on certain days.

This morning was one of those days!

Leaving about 15 minutes before sunrise, the neighborhood was so beautifully peaceful and quiet, only the rustling of a slight breeze, and the sounds of a myriad of birds chirping their morning greeting to those out to hear them.

Actually, many of those birds can be heard whether a person wants to or not! And it always seems to be the smallest of them with the loudest voices. Such is the case for all species!

As we head down the street one of the guys in the group looks up and points out a cloud—one single, small, solitary cloud. The rest of the sky surrounding us is completely cloud free, so the conversation started on why that particular cloud in that particular spot. Exactly what was causing only that cloud to appear.

As we continued on our walk, and continued to stare up into the sky, that one cloud got larger and larger, and then as quickly as it appeared, piece by piece, puff by puff, it was gone—only to appear a few minutes later again.

This happened the entire time we were on our walk, so over an hour and a half of a cloud forming, growing a bit in size, then quickly vanishing in the air.

Clouds form when the invisible water vapor in the air condenses into visible water droplets or ice crystals. For this to happen, the parcel of air must be saturated, that is, unable to hold all the water it contains in vapor form, so it starts to condense into a liquid or solid form. A cloud.

Thanks to Google, we understood how the cloud formed, but why did it form only in that one spot. Thanks to Google once again, and a topographical map, it was apparent that one location was the culmination of all the wind swishing around in a circle around that one location, a location known for the wind due to the peak of a 10,081 foot Mt. Baldy to its north.

The wind came down from the central valley of California and lifted as it made its way over the peak. That particular location actually contains 3 peaks—San Antonio Peak (Mt. Baldy), Ontario Peak, and Rancho Cucamonga Peak. The air forms a circular vortex above the spot, and the cloud decided to take up residence in that space.

It was an intriguing function of nature to watch.

As the sun rose, the cloud got smaller in size, and eventually disappeared completely, leaving a beautiful, clear blue sky.