Kage Baker would be making sacrifices by now. She’d be filling glass vessels with ice and sea water and shards of blue glass, hoping for a weather change. The summer heat will not end.
I once suggested to her we should just enjoy such Indian summers. She replied, “This is not Indian summer. This is Aztec summer, and the sun god is out for blood!”
The weather people claim another high pressure system has settled over California. I say the dragons have overbred in the Sierra Nevadas, and we are all suffering from exaggerated brood heat. A plague of drangonlings will soon hatch out, and California will burn to a crisp.
I’d almost welcome the flames, if they were followed by rain.
We had one blessed, lying week of cooling down – fog, cold nights, actual tangible dew! Wet rose petals, little raccoon and cat prints on my car – and some freaking BIG cat prints in the rose bed, perhaps indicating lynxes or pumas come wandering down from Griffith Park in the suddenly hospitable dark.
And do not think we don’t have them here, either, Dear Readers. Lynxes or bobcats are frequent visitors in the fall and winter; I’m not sure which one, but some sort of giant kitties with tufted ears, enormous feet and no tails … one of my childhood pet cats was half wild cat, the unexpected result of her Persian mother’s shilly shallying with a beautiful stranger in the garden. I ended up with a 50 pound female cat with tufted ears, a tail coiled like a spring, and the temperament of Pirate Jenny.
And the puma in Griifith Park even has a name – P-22, which sounds like an English bobby, but stands for a cat the size of a couch, with eyes like opal cabochons. I don’t like it when they eat bike riders, but they sure do discourage the raccoons. And with the heat fading for a few days, the feline patrol had moved in right on schedule, which was sort of comforting if somewhat unnerving.
Thursday, I went North to San Francisco for a pre-Dickens Fair Directors meeting. We try to assemble before rehearsals begin, to exchange news, props and scripts; memorize the new changes to the layout and the sets, trade cast members (“I need three little kids to be Cratchitts; anyone want to trade for a spare Soiled Dove?”) and otherwise hob-nob with our fellow wizards. This year it was in a lovely Italian restaurant in the Castro, and we took over the back room for a riot of greetings, gossip and tears over our beloved dead.
It was great. And the weather was cool and misty, and the vineyards were all going red and copper. The cottonwoods had turned to gold tinsel; steam rose off the cows in the meadows off Highway 101 as I drove through Petaluma and Cotati. Pumpkins and haystacks everywhere; monolithic bales of cotton along the side of I-5, like migrating glaciers.
I was so ready for Autumn!
So what do I get? Another heat spell in the Los Angeles Basin. I drove down from exquisite fog on the Grapevine to super-heated dust in Simi Valley. It’s in the 90’s now – again – and due to remain so for this week. I am once more reduced to hiding from the daylight hours and trying to sleep through the ferocity of the tyrant sun.
Luckily, my room is on the North side of the house, where no direct sun hits. And my lace curtains filter the ambient light, and the overhead fan provides a breeze; and if I just stay here and concentrate, I may get some work done. I’ve had my runaway trips and my vacations in the Fabled North; I have cheese from the Cheese Factory in Novato, artisan olive oil, rare Faire coffee from the Teahouse of the Mullah Nasruddin’s Donkey, orange fondant wafers from See’s … everything I might need to wait out this last attack of heat.
If only the summer will end. Oh, let the harvest come soon!