Drinking Tim Hortons at Niagara Falls

Niagara Falls with a Timmies

One cold February morning a couple of years ago I found myself enjoying a Niagara Falls sunrise.

I had risen early and loaded the car with gear. A half hour drive, and a short walk, and I joined a small selection of hardy photographers that had also braved the elements that morning.

The day was overcast and dark, and the concern was that it would start with a whimper rather than a bang. Sunrise is not sunrise if it happens behind a cloud layer. We waited, patiently. And our patience paid off. With minutes to spare before the sun rose over the rim of the world, the clouds cleared and the world came alive with warmth and light. Sunrise truly is magical. Every time.

Shutters clicked frantically as we sated ourselves on the glorious sight. Within minutes the sun was arcing high into the sky and sunrise was over. Though there was still so much to see. The birds began their breakfast. Diving and swooping through the mists, backlit by the still-rising sun. That sight also never ceases to inspire and amaze me.

By now I had taken all the shots I wanted of the dawn, and was spending some quiet moments just enjoying the wonder of Niagara Falls. As I stood there taking it in, these two women walked up. They had not come to take photos. They had just come to watch. It was immediately clear from their animated excitement that this was their first sunrise at the falls. I smiled as I recalled mine.

I was just as excitable when that sun came over the horizon for the first time. I was a kid in a candy store. I smiled as I listened to them chatter and wave their arms, and just live life. For a timeless moment they were truly alive. I was in that moment with them. And it felt good.

As they drank their Tim Hortons, I raised my own in quiet salute. And, smiling, went about my day.

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