While the rest of the country freezes over, it seems that Southern California has decided summer is here. Now sure, a warm patch isn’t uncommon for this time of the year, but you can’t tell me that if you are living in the area you don’t secretly fear that the sun will go away again? The idea of bright blue skies, crisp morning air, and balmy 70‘s to 80‘s in the afternoon going into dusk is nothing to complain about.
As long as the northern part of the state gets snow (i.e. our drinking water), we have nothing to fear, other than arsonists that enjoy spending time in the countrysides. Perhaps if we set aside a small portion of land for these firebugs and allow them to play with matches in a manner that doesn’t cause harm for everyone else, then we should be fine (kind of like a Disneyland for people that like watching things oxidize).
But back to the weather, or should I say the consistent wonderfulness of it. I remember years back after first moving to Oregon, and going through 30 days of clouds the first winter, thinking now I understand the allure of Los Angeles. There is a reason why Hollywood, Disneyland, and all manner of ‘happy’ places exist within its boundaries. The landscape and conditions shape and mold the minds of those that live in it. If the sun is out the majority of the year, what’s there to be sad about. When we talk about snow, we are talking about something that we drive several hours to spend time in with a fondness that would make an Eskimo blush. Then at the end of the visit, we hurry back down the roads to toasty valleys where everyone wears shorts and sandals the majority of the time.
In this state of blissful contentment though, I think something is lost. The rigor of confrontation that is found when you follow the seasons, drive icy roads, wait with eagerness for the first day without a coat in April, or finally retire the woolen sweaters for the year, speaks of challenge and expectation. There is a forced reckoning that comes with being at the mercy of the elements, knowing that you have zero control over what may happen humbles a person. Dark cold days, give a person time to think, sometimes unhappy thoughts, but also a reckoning of what strengths one has internally, points of resolve.
Then again, perhaps a case can be made, that with this lack of external pressure from dealing with weather, we find ourselves in a constant battle psychologically speaking, with who we have become, or are in a state of becoming.