"I dream of a hard and brutal mysticism in which the naked self merges with the nonhuman world and somehow survives...Paradox and bedrock."-Edward Abbey

14 September 2014

The Beach Weather of Indian Summer

Sabina's sunflowers are hanging in there, despite the fact we kissed freezing-with tongue-the other morning. And I name thee Defiance...

One last columbine hanging on...

The other day, I drove down-valley-two- thousand vertical-to our community garden plot amongst rumors of weather and visions of pesto pizza. Although, it had been breezy up along the upper western valley as it meets up with the Roof of the World, the sun was shinning and there were very few clouds. I would later document the high temperature of the day at sixty-eight.

As I drove east, the clouds increased. Within the span of fifteen miles, I had gone from sunny to murky. From the sixties to the forties. I put on my soft shell over my t-shirt and zipped up against the damp chill to harvest my basil, purple bell peppers, and tomatoes. Later that night, I donned a sweater. On the drive up, I noted how the murk followed me, causing me to remark later that the dragons chased me up the valley.

Job, for all our differences in theology, will sometimes tell me he lives to hear of the world as seen through my eyes...

It was not without a bit of a chuckle that I heard the first snowfall happened down below and we did not receive a flake-unless you speak in context of some of the snowbums that inhabit the area. Oh, the schadenfredude. Whilst it was cool the day after weather moved in, the sky was clear and the sun was warm.

"This is beach weather compared to Denver," a traveler said to me.

"It's always beach weather in the mountains," I said glibly, even if, technically, and, geologically, the last time there was an ocean in this state was seventy-some-odd-million years ago.

"Even in January?" The traveler asked me skeptically.

"Especially in January," I replied with smirk. "Just think in the context of McMurdo Station. Easy."

Hey, on equatorial Europa, our January weather would be positively 'pocalyptic in context of temperature, and meditate on that for a little bit of perspective...

My Friday's walk had a bit of bite to it, but there is no bad weather. Just the wrong clothes. I did note there are far less neighbors holding court on their porches. Another omen of the changing seasons; the summer residents returning to their winter nests. The sun now sets straight down the middle of the valley, which can be blinding when walking straight into it. Slowly, our nearest star will shift south, toward the ridge line of Pendleton. A portend of the long dark.

The planet's tilt on its axis is the reason for the season...

Succeeding days have been warmer. Meteorological prophecy has foretold of little chance of precipitation and mild temperatures. Beach weather. The possibility of grilling and chimineas without the heavy layers.

I've heard whispers of  indian summer. I just call it autumn. It's all in the perspective.


  1. I thought this last week were the last gasps, in a Cheyne-Stokes event the summer was going to breath. Then today, damn near 70, and if the bastids at weather central can be believed, up to 77 on Wednesday.

    I'ts similar here, twixt the 'flats' and 'uptown'. We only have maybe 1500ft elevation change, but it's night and day. Prefab houses on the flats, trailers, and near the only golf course, several of the town's near 400K houses. Also the temp. difference...in winter it's often 5 to 10 degrees colder down there. Might be -25 at the airport, up here it's a balmy -20.

    Uptown, we be either downright low-rent, shabby-chic, Victorian beauties, or like my neighborhood...houses built around 1920, craftsman stuff, each looks different.

    I envy you the garden stuff...some fresh basil would make a good pesto with the Hmong garlic and some procured pine nuts.

    1. I am continually amused by the differences in weather elevation and/or a ridge line can make. Wednesday is looking to be the warmest day of the week.

      If I could, I'd be going down to Silverton the end of October for a three day symposium on weather forecasting put on by CAIC-Colorado Avalanche Information Center. Then I too could be a certifiable prophet. Sempai said he might be able to get our board to foot the bill for me to go next year.

  2. Good morning Sir! I am struck by your friend who says he lives to hear of the world as seen through your eyes. As someone who has read your blog for almost two years, I can't say I blame him!!

    1. Ya'll give me too much credit. Thank you. ;)

  3. My sunflowers didn't bloom this year. Now I've got semi-tall, fully-dead stalks banging against my fence.
    It's a sad sight.

    1. That is sad. We had a total of thirteen bloom, but some are finally starting to go.