Daybook · On Places & Travel

How a Sunset in Sedona is Like Scuba Diving

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I was just in Sedona, Arizona a few days ago, and although I’d been twice before, I’d never once seen it in sunlight– the first time I was there, it rained, and the second time, it was night. On this trip, I finally got to see the place in pure broad daylight.  I thought Sedona was definitely pretty, but not more so than other places I’ve traveled to in the Southwest.

And then the sun started to set.

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As I looked around, I found myself thinking that clearly, somebody had digitally altered the landscape. I’ve been fortunate enough to visit a number of truly beautiful places on this planet, but only a few have made me wonder whether someone had implanted Photoshop directly into my brain.   (The other place that I think of often is Queenstown, New Zealand.)

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Ironically, this Sedona sunset reminded me of a moment when I was scuba diving off of Roatan, in Honduras. I swam over a deep undersea canyon, and suddenly, I was surrounded by the water that was bluest blue I have ever seen. It was like swimming inside cobalt glass. I didn’t have a camera with me and I doubt I could have captured the color anyway, but there’s something about being immersed in an improbable palette that makes me feel very glad to be alive.

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