Two days of flat, grey light has diminished some of the joy of walking with Aki across this mountain meadow. Thoughts of a woman lost while hiking on a cross channel mountain doesn’t help. Not even the explosion of pink and magenta wildflowers (bog rosemary and dwarf rhododendron) lifts my spirits for the muskeg meadow they grow in is in drought. Ponds, where the reflections of mountains and British buckbean flowers can be broken by skittering water bugs are now dry. I can walk anywhere without soaking my boots.
Aki takes advantage of the freedom to roam from dried pond to dried pond, then rolls on her back on the meadow. The look of bliss on her furry grey face lifts my mood.
We walk down to where the trail crosses a diminished Fish Creek and turn back to the car. As the creek noise fades, I start to hear thrush song and here and there a robin making the most out of this summer day. We pass an odd pair—one purple violet and a yellow skunk cabbage flower—standing side by side, but a discrete distance apart. They could be strangers waiting for a bus or new kids killing time before school orientation begins.