I found this post in my drafts folder. I wrote it last October or so. I’m not sure why I never posted it so I’m posting it now.
Today, Jenn and I went for a hike on Maple Mountain. There was a forest fire there this summer so we wanted to see what the burnt area looked like before anything has had a chance to grow back. It was fascinating, and a little spooky. The burnt bark on the remaining trees was now spongy from the recent rains. Stella was unconcerned with the larger implications and ran around like an idiot, loving every minute of it. For an area so close by, it was a neat and different little outing.
And last week, Jenn and I took Stella for a night walk through the forest trails in our neighbourhood. We hike these trails virtually every day but almost never at night, and it was a completely different experience. There was no moon out that night so it was really dark. Jenn had a headlamp on and it gave the woods a Blair Witch Project vibe. Once we got back onto the road, we saw two white owls perched on the power line overhead, their unflappably (ha) stoic faces staring hard at us. We hear owls around here a lot but don’t see them often, and this was the first time either of us had seen two owls at once. It was crazy how a walk we do all the time was so different from usual.
I like this stuff. I like it when we are able to experience new things in places we are already extremely familiar with. It makes me feel like we are doing a good job of keeping our brains turned on, of looking for and appreciating the subtle changes around us. I’m proud of that.
lately i’ve heard a handful of people say stuff like, “holy hell, when are we going to get some warm weather??” as if they expect beach season to begin in april. comments like that lead me to believe that the last three or four years of droughts and heat waves have warped peoples sense of seasons to the point that they now expect to jump straight from winter into summer.
that bums me out. i like having a normal spring, with cool days that can be sunny and warm one second and pissing rain the next. i like it because, even though i hate that kind of inconsistent weather, it means we are that much closer to avoiding yet another drought this year. i’ll take rain in april and may in exchange for decent water levels and less forest fires in july and augst. i mean, shit — a few years ago we had a stubborn forest fire just a kilometer or two from our fucking house because the summer had been so damn dry and hot. that was really scary. the real, legitimate terror inspired by that kind of event is not worth the luxury of tanning in april.
so yeah. there isn’t a damn thing wrong with the spring we’re having on vancouver island so far. everyone can stop complaining about it, and find something else to complain about that i can then complain about.
hi billy. have you seen pics on fb of how yellow and smoky it is here? it’s so fucked up. it looks like an instagram filter. it’s because of some big forest fires here on the island. it makes me feel like that ‘a is for apocalypse’ story because looking out the window is surreal and frightening. i was going to take a pic for you but i figure everyone else is already doing it.
yesterday, i went to the fish ladders with liz, gen, matt, and spencer, and the river was incredibly low. it was as low as its been at the end of a hot summer, but it’s the start of july. and there’s no rain in the forecast. it honestly has me really worried because we’re already at the max water restrictions and drought conditions, but it’s going to be months before temps drop or we see any rain. i wonder what’s going to happen, how bad is it going to get. i wonder if we’ll have to buy bottled water from elsewhere because our taps are going to go dry. i wonder if we’re going to end up with fires around here.
it sucks because going to the fish ladders is supposed to be really fun and nice but it mostly just caused me concern because i kept looking at how low the water was. i almost wish i was working so that i had less time to worry.
the funny thing is that last summer was also hot and dry, but not till much later in the season so i didn’t really care, and i wound up having one of the best summers of my life despite the weather. but so far this summer i’ve been mostly miserable, worried about my back and water levels and fire dangers. 2015 is the worst!
i got your pics but they’re really weird. there was two of your parents getting stuff out of the car, and a few of you making faces. i thought they were going to be of your folks standing in front of things. i liked your second face the best, it was less obviously a weird face.
ok i have to go worry myself to sleep for the rest of summer now. night night.