Sunday, May 17, 2009

just to set the record straight, what was called an "inland hurricane" below is now being called a "derecho," and these are different, so weather people are scrambling to clarify and explain. but they also admit that it was unusual even for a derecho, it had unusual power in the comma's tail, and they talk about parts of a comma which gives me an inner chuckle as one who has a keen eye for commas and especially marks that could be interpreted as either a comma or a period, or in some cases, just a mark. i am bracing myself for possibly being a writing teacher again; it could happen, somebody's got to do it. after a week of watching kids and sawing a gigantic christmas tree, getting pine tar all over me, it will be an interesting change.

the break flew by so fast, i almost forgot to notice a few things: that our house was surprisingly unscathed, though the one we used to live in was battered; that kids don't mind a week without movies, half as much as parents mind a week of no movies for kids; that the weather, overall, has been stunningly nice, a good time to be without power, or to be outside working. for this area, a livable may is a godsend; sometimes it's all over and too steamy already by now. and finally, the people in the area are virtually shouting at their families around the land, hoping the world will notice the huge trees fallen all over our lives, leaving us anguished and destitute. but, almost nobody died; no wonder the world didn't turn its head. and, there have been derechos before; did we think we were the only ones? pines fell, because they have shallow roots and the ground was wet. oaks fell, because they're hard and don't give, they either crack, or don't. houses can take a whacking if they're well built, but a lot of them aren't, and at least a dozen are done for, finished. start over. flatten it, make a field; let some new trees grow. by fall you'll miss the shade.

and that was the most agonizing, to me. the trees were my allies, my friends; i knew them even if i didn't know their names. some people just figured, while they're at it, take them all out, and they did. but this, to me, compounds the whole air-con, steamy-unlivable dilemma; we crank the air-con, global warming makes it worse, things spiral downward. the only solution is to move north.

break is over. back to work. i'm off to dominican republic in what, a couple of weeks?


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