HAVE WADERS, WILL TRAVEL

I moved from Michigan because of all the precipitation. I was constantly under an urban rain of terror as it cooled and condensed, and I listened to weather predictions of doom and gloom. I’ve lived through storms, tornados, black ice, with cold that cut its way to my bones. And although few states can match Michigan’s extraordinary scenery, I wasn’t fond of ferrying down streets with an outboard motor and hydroplaning like I was on the Colorado River. Dr. Seuss and I had the same idea when the sun did not shine and it was always too wet to play, and we sat in the house every cold, cold wet day. It was never going to suit me having a career outdoors or having my parents read the headline, “Tim Horton Hires A Ho.” I didn’t want to be hanging out on street corners selling doughnuts or possibly something else in frigid temperatures.

That being said, I moved to this luminous state where there’s hardly any precipitation. Pimps I’m not so sure of. Weathercasters announce every day that it will be mostly crowdy with a great big chance of swimmers and sunbathers. People here get pretty excited when water falls from the sky and wets their plants. So when this latest storm blew in, it became the main topic of conversation. The nutty and sometimes nefarious newscasters were sending panic to the population, giving instructions the same way climatologists in monsoon states mandate immediate evacuations. Everyone was freaking out over a little moisture. I had to laugh because I’d been through a lot worse weather than rain. They advised the public to take cover, bring oars and inner tubes if you absolutely positively must go anywhere, and basically be ready to board an ark. Folks were gathering two dogs, two ducks, two squirrels, leaving out skunks and snakes for obvious reasons. I myself would take two books. One on how to get along with a cluster of claws, and another helpful hinter on how to handle flatulence in a closed area while on a forty day cruise.

I urged neighbors to sit with me on the bay of my front entrance watching the tide roll in. I wanted a show of hands from anyone who liked Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain, because I was fully prepared to set up a wet bar, a Slip ‘N Slide, and other rainy day activities on my lawn. I mean, who’s afraid of a little tempest? I figured on having fun as long as I was still afloat and the wind wasn’t carrying me to Atlanta. I was glad it was the weekend so I could wash clothes, mop the floors and front porch, take stormtrooper selfies, prance, dance, and drink under the continuous cloudburst. I must have sounded something like Gene Kelly in one of his dynamic singing moods, because relentless raindrops came down on my umbrella as I was puddle jumping and belting out song lyrics totally related to the drencher. Why be moody when you can jiggle your booty and cause people to question your sanity?

Yet something caused some sort of onshore water displacement and before long, showers fell on San Diego for four days and four nights in biblical proportions. The radiant sunlight, along with my pervading cheery mood, started to shrink and shrivel away. Given the intensity of this surge, we were under a severe winter watch that was expected to be upgraded to floods of saturation. I know there’s a drought. But would it kill them to assure this native Midwesterner that there won’t be an unfavorable weather disturbance? I like water, when it’s frozen into cubes and mixed with Vodka. As it turned out, I was surfing my driveway and kept company with one fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish and some squid and seals, since our land essentially merged with the ocean.

My beau and I were jolted awake by walloping winds and pounding wetness, making San Diego the most popular dive destination. All we did was sit, sit, sit, sit. And we didn’t like it! Not one little bit. The pain in my back meant rain, and the pain in my neck meant the new tree we planted was uprooted and bent to a forty-five degree angle. Frost and snowflakes even made an appearance here and there. I would make plans with people then nix those plans since I didn’t want to be marred by such monsoon madness. I was telling friends, “I hate to cancel, but those plans were made a few days ago when my motivation wasn’t yet fractured by the idea of treading through glacial estuaries.” I should have added, ‘I do not like green eggs and ham, nor do I like building a dam or scraping ice off my car windshield.’ Basically, I bitched about the storm, I bitched about the cold, I bitched about the lack of sunshine, and about growing old. Not every gal is made of sugar and spice and things that are nice. Some gals are made of squall distress, Spanish rice, and boobs that may not serve as a flotation device. The storm cured the drought situation. But I’d be a lot more thrilled if it never rained or snowed in sunny California.

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