Mason County News
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Sparkling Like Jewels - City Lights
Wednesday, January 13, 2010 • Posted January 13, 2010

In my life, I've been fortunate enough to have traveled to a number of cities around our nation. Each of them holds special memories for me, but I'm especially fond of their nighttime displays.

I know that it's politically incorrect to like the lights put out by our towns and burgs; but, I just can't help myself. Having grown up in a rural setting, there is something enticing about the lights of a town sparkling in the clear evening air.

As a child, I remember heading up to Brady's July Jubilee. As we neared the T. Graves ranch, you could actually see the tops of the ferris wheel down at Richard's Park, making Brady's skyline just a bit more colorful and brighter.

San Antonio's skyline sparkles with towers now; but, as a child, it was the Tower of the Americas that caught my attention in their night sky. You could watch the elevators sliding up and down the tall shaft, taking passengers up for a meal that would rotate them around the top of the spire.

Austin's skyline, then and now, was still dominated by the state capitol building. That brightly lit dome stood out against the dark sky, punctuated by other rapidly rising office buildings and the UT tower.

New York City, like Los Angeles, is one of those cities best seen from the highest vantage one can obtain. Both of them glitter and shine with lights from buildings, street lamps and thousands of automobiles.

Boston, as viewed from my friends, the Wheltles in Arlington Heights, snakes about the Bay. The slow moving lights of ships heading into the Atlantic are contrasted to the descending lights of planes landing at Logan to provide even more activity and color.

Seattle has always been one of my favorites, with the lights of the city spilling up and over the hills, then winding their way down to the water. The Space Needle, though beautiful at night, still seems an odd contribution to their skyline.

Tampa, like so many of the cities on the Gulf Coast, is more beautiful from the water at night. From a boat in Tampa Bay, over near St. Petersburg, Tampa sparkles and shines, twinkling on the ripples of water.

And then there is Mason.

Every day, as I come through the cut of Highway 87 over Mason Mountain, I'm treated to an ever-changing display. The lights of Mason spread out across the hillsides, seeming much bigger than she really is.

Some mornings, there is only a glow pushing through low clouds. On others, such as this morning, every light shines brilliantly and twinkles in the early morning air. If I'm making my trip just a bit later in the morning, you can actually make out the silhouettes of the hills, enfolding the many yellow, white and pink lights.

I've approached Mason from many directions. Each one has its own unique charms at night; but, I will retain my love for the northern approach. It is what I think of when I think of "the lights of home." It is the one I think of fondly when I've been away for a while. And, it is the one I will remember for the rest of my days.

It’s all just my opinion.

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