There was flat white cloud above the construction site, and fog drifting below it so that the far-off valley floor could not be seen. It was impossible to tell what time it was, though Chen knew that it was very early in the morning, it being the start of his shift. He often felt that there was a climate all of its own this high in the mountains: the clouds never cleared, and the heat of the sun was never felt no matter the time of day.
It was bright enough, at least. Working out on the site was especially nerve-wracking when the light began to die. Chen and his colleagues scattered gradually out onto the apparatus that would eventually become a new motorway bridge, some carrying toolboxes, and Chen hauling his wire feeder with his mask perched on his head.
He ought to have been concentrating as he strapped himself into his usual harness and lowered himself over the edge of the crude wooden bridge, but his mind wandered back to his children again and again. He wondered what his wife was saying to them.