Sprawled across a gritty sandstone boulder lodged several miles up the canyon, I lie overlooking the south-facing littoral plain far below, the day’s heat seeping into my bones, a cold beer can sweating close at hand.
The stream gurgles through the sticks, stones, and logs and washes over a mossy face of bedrock into an emerald pool.
I raise my head just high enough to slosh a foamy gulp of beer into my mouth, catching a glimpse of the sprawling city and shimmering Pacific beyond my well tanned toes.
I rest my head back onto the boulder in a slothful state to doze, as a swallowtail butterfly dances in puffs of wind rustling the leaves of a bay tree overhanging the creek.
Meanwhile, in a foreign land a world away, a Navy SEAL storms a fortified compound on a mission to find and kill face to face the world’s most wanted militant Islamist.