Practicing Descriptive Writing Here – Brain Fog? – No, Real Fog!

It is not the clear-sighted who rule the world. Great achievements are accomplished in a blessed, warm fog.


If you can get away from it, fog is beautiful. This week Debbie Simorte, my Girls on Fire editor, asked me how the weather in Visalia could be sunny and foggy at the same time, like that was a Kansas City impossibility. When I drove to Los Angeles this weekend for a meeting, I had to drive almost to Tejon Pass before I found an example of what sunny fog looked like. Visalia had no sun that day, only fog. The freeway, I5 South, split the fog in half as it curled up for a nap against the mountains north of the Grapevine.


As I drove south, the light haze on east side of the freeway foretold of the clear skies awaiting me in Los Angeles. The beauty of the graduated fading fog enticed me off the freeway long enough to snap these pictures before I continued on my trip. I didn’t move much from one spot as I rotated from east to west to capture the entire scene for you.

My favorite feathering of fog

My favorite feathering of fog

Tinkerbell should be in this picture somewhere sprinkling magical fairy dust in the mountain canyons. It seemed unreal to me.

fog3 The arc of fog needed a rainbow marking its border, but none appeared. It remained stark white. Fog tried to bar the sun from entering the valley.  At about two in the afternoon the sun tried to burn a hole in the clouds as it had already done on the east side of the freeway. I couldn’t stay to see if it succeeded.



Not a dense fog
Not a dense fog

I stood behind the tree and tried to shoot up at the sun, but the effect didn’t please me.

foggy night
foggy night

I left the meeting at 4:29 PM the next day in a rush to get over the Grapevine while it was still light. Dropping into the Central Valley, the fog greeted me. It probably had never left. At at night fog no longer felt benign. I took this picture through my dirty windshield as I ripped through the fog approaching Bakersfield, I must have plowed the clouds away. On a closer inspection microdrops of dust on my windshield remained as a calling card of the fleeing mist. I look straight ahead. I could see clearly now. When I looked to my left, there it was. It hovered just off the freeway at a gas station ready to pounce on me again. Once Bakersfield’s lights no longer protected my car and me from the fog, the sky dropped puffs of translucent cotton air onto the road. My car became a vacuum cleaner sucking in white dust bunnies. The stronger the suction, the thicker the fog became. By the time I turned off the freeway onto a country road, I could see only three lines ahead of me. A car passed me going the other direction. I counted to six as I watched him in my rearview mirror, and poof, he was gone. Fog turned the roads I know so well into a strangers.

For those of you who have never experienced Valley fog, this is a taste of what the natives call “Tule fog.” How do you describe the fog in your area?

Writing is like driving at night in the fog. You can only see as far as your headlights, but you can make the whole trip that way.


Author: Marsha

Hi, I'm Marsha Ingrao, author, blogger and retired teacher/consultant - Promoting Hobby Blogging

9 thoughts on “Practicing Descriptive Writing Here – Brain Fog? – No, Real Fog!”

  1. Lovely post MVBFM 😀
    I live near a river so fog is aplenty enhanced by almost every house having a log burner. The village centre can be unbreathable some nights in the winter. Oh, it’s winter ! *gasping for breath* :/


  2. I loved reading this partly because of all the (to me) exotic sounding place names of faraway locations. But I also enjoyed the writing. You have a knack with descriptive writing and I had no trouble visualising the places and the fog. The photos are good too – though I did smile at the thought of us mad writers – especially bloggers? – who break our journeys to take photos specifically for our readers. I get funny looks around my village and the island in general when I’m seen ‘behaving like a tourist’ and photographing ‘normal and everyday’ sights.

    In Scotland there are various words for mist and fog. On the east coast there is the haar – a sea fog brought on by a spell of warm and sunny weather – common during the summer. It’s also sometimes called sea-fret. Then there’s smirr or smirn- which is sort of a drizzle filled mist – where the rain doesn’t so much fall as hang around. Here in the Hebrides, it’s a maritime climate – so mist is common and it hangs about in the glens and down to very low levels. Indeed Skye’s other name is the Misty Isle – some tourists come here and never see the mountains because of a persistent mist.

    You’re a natural creative non-fiction writer, Marsha. Great stuff! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That sounds like our area. We are usually out of the fog, though we haven’t been for the past three weeks or so. We rarely have foggy day schedules while just west of us they often start school late to avoid the dangers of fog. I hope this comment makes sense. I’m falling asleep at my computer. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I love the fog and mist, that I do. Beautiful post. Wonderful images. A sun-bathed fog is quite a sight here on the sea in the morn as the sun rises. The horizon is erased and one feels weightless, wandering through the swirling ash, the feeling of cool velvet sand under one’s toes, and the occasional wink of water through the swath of white makes one feel as though one is actually inside a cloud, suspended in the sky. Then this great, blazing white center oozes forth, liquid gold melting through the fog…such an astounding feeling. At the macro-level it is especially spectacular…watching droplets dance, sizzle and fritter about in the air. If one gets in just right spot, it is quite a scene indeed. Jubilant cheers,

    smiling toad

    Liked by 1 person

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