As the Boeing 727 left the runway in London we raced away from the sunset, bound for Poland. For the first time I was looking down as the red-orange horizon was hurled into blackness. I have spent many Michigan nights staring up during those last few seconds when darkness takes hold but never have I seen it as the gods would see it.

I watched as the streetlights, pubs, and shops of London made a valiant effort to fight off the darkness. The dark serpent that is the River Thames squirmed through the city center. Wriggling in every direction were the streets that held the keepers of the light but from here they just looked like the river’s flaming serpent babies.

As we neared the English Channel the lights trailed off and the darkness was alone with no flaming reptiles to keep it at bay. I have spent the entire day frantically running from bus to bus, gate to gate, and plane to plane. The dark stillness over England tonight is a peaceful and welcome sight. The night is far from over. I still have to navigate the buses and streets of Krakow in temperatures at around twenty below 0 Celsius without knowing the language as I attempt to find my room. I read this morning that the Antarctic exploration settlement recorded higher temperatures than Poland. All this is coming, and it’s coming soon, but for the next two hours there is nothing to worry about. There is just me and the darkness. And, besides, other people are much better at worrying than I am so I will leave it up to them. I will enjoy the moment and fantasize about the next adventure. And when it happens I will share it with you…