In The Heart of Winter

Kage Baker liked to retreat and fort up after Dickens Fair was over. Lots of us do – we’ve just spent 2 months at Extreme Christmas, surrounded by crowds, being as demonstrative as we can possibly be. Then there is the familial insanity of Christmas (whatever your especial familial insanity is), and maybe even a last dash to the New Year celebrations. If you are a dance until midnight sort of person … and who is not, from time to time?

At this point, collapsing is an appropriate reaction. We may not be under snow drifts here in Los Angeles, but it is still the deep heart of winter – in the best of years it is cold and dim, the days are brief and the nights very dark. Even in Los Angeles, the winter spreads out like smoke from the hills and diminishes the glitter and glow of the city; it’s just darker now.

And of course, literally, we are under a vast cloud cover right now. The Basin is the terminus for what the meteorologists are calling an “aerial river”. This evidently means a high-flying ribbon of endless water, pouring down along the arch of the sky and debouching onto Los Angeles like a god’s … fire hose. The City is drowning. The hills are walking, marching down the canyon roads in kilts of mud and swirling boulders, to close and hold every border they can find.

And just as I write this, the thunder has begun! The lights are flickering a little, the rain is coming ever harder, and the now the house is shaking to the jubilation of the storm! Cats are discreetly retreating under all the bedclothes, and the Corgi is running in circles barking madly … the parrot is unperturbable; he just gronks softly and fluffs out all his feathers.

Kage would be dancing around the living room in delight – nothing she liked better than a thunderstorm, especially when we were already cozily under cover and settled in for the day. Me, I’d be doing just what I am about to go do: make sure the lamps have oil and the candles are well-seated, save and post this, and go watch Fimbulwinter wandering the hills of Griffith Park.

Time to retire!

Tomorrow: Christmas is almost here

About Kate

I am Kage Baker's sister. Kage was/is a well-known science fiction writer, who died on January 31, 2010. She told me to keep her work going - I'm doing that. This blog will document the process.
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