Seasons

THE RISING SUN STREAMS IN LOW, lighting the far side of the kitchen floor. As I stand in front of the coffee maker, attempting to prepare my much needed first cup of the day, the sun drills into the corner of my right eye, making it difficult to measure the water.  It also warms me on this chilly morning, which reminds me that all too soon, part of my morning routine will be to dash outside to lower the shade across the window. A race to block the heat as the sun’s penetrating fingers try to grasp onto my nice, perpetually cool living space.

For now, I am allowed the joy of soaking up the radiant heat, as I wait for the coffee to finish brewing.  I’ll worry about too much heat later.

Only a week earlier, I was wondering when I would ever put my winter clothes away.  I live in the questionable state of ‘Sunny California’. Well, that’s what people that don’t live here call it.  Oh– and probably the California Tourist Board.

The only places you will find with almost daily sunshine would be in the desert — and perhaps the Central Valley.  Even Los Angeles has its fair share of overcast, gloomy days.

Here in the north-western edge of Central California, we could have winter-like days just about any day of the year.  This nearly drove us crazy. At least in Southern California, amidst the smog and overcast, the summers were reasonably warm.

When we first moved up here, my husband and I found that the ‘summer’ weather toyed with us–gorgeous, with a little overcast mornings during most of the week days (whilst we toiled inside buildings), then, as the weekend approached, gloom would set in. Our real ‘summer’ weather came in a two to three week chunk, in very late September or October. Our weather forecaster calls it “Local’s Weather”.   Then, with clear skies, it could get unbearably hot–at least for me–climbing to the 80’s and 90’s.  The rest of the year, we became accustom to dressing in layers, never knowing what the day might bring.

Which leads me back to my initial question.  I would love to think that my thermals, heavy socks and turtle necks will go into my ‘winter box’ soon, but the weather has been so bizarre lately, I am beginning to wonder.  Several times, I’ve started to collect them for storage, but a cold snap or high winds with a damp undercurrent digs its heels in, so I hold off for yet another week or so.

Such extremes.

Maybe it’s just my bad memory, but I really don’t recall the weather being quite this fickle, nor this extreme.  Our high winds usually come in January. Maybe February, at the very latest, bringing with it beautiful storms. Rain, decorator clouds. The clouds came, but no rain and very little wind during the usual timing. Now, it’s past the middle of April, time for gentle rains, yet we get 30-50 mph winds on occasion.  Higher constant winds than usual–not the gentle breeze I’ve become accustom to over the years.  No rain (well, maybe a teensy bit). Some gorgeous clouds, yes, but the rain bypassed my little corner for the most part.  That means I have to do more watering to keep the status quo for my yard.  It also means my grassy/weedy areas will die off faster, turning to the dangerous dried kindling for fire season, which means I get to trudge amongst the poison oak and whack at the weeds to keep my home safe from fires.

These freakish seasons seem to be taking root and becoming the standard.  I am not sure I like that.  I love and embrace changes–it’s what life is all about, but I also cherish the predictability of the seasons the Central Coast has given us over the years.  It’s my security blanket in my ever-changing life, filled with ever-changing seasons.

I have to laugh!  As I wrote that last sentence, I felt a mental ‘tap’ on my shoulder.  Well, it’s the ‘physical’ security blanket.  I have a far more enduring security blanket in my God.  Never changing, always present, always willing to listen what I have to say (whether good or bad), always willing to instruct, aid, heal, envelope me in times of need, placing earth-bound angels in my path to help me as needed…as he did yesterday…

And for all of that–and more–I find myself always praising and thanking Him.  It is because of Him that I am able to deal with all the changing seasons that make up my life, whether weather-related, relational or physical.  He makes me smile…and laugh.  So, when you see my smile or hear my laughter, you now know why.

I hope you are able to find peace in your ever-changing seasons of Life.

God be with you.