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  September 22, 2005

 

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 Monday - September 22, 2005

Autumn

Iím starting to feel a little guilty. Catherineís off hiking Mount Whitney in a snow storm and Iím home with the cat, baking brownies and drinking beer. I decided itís time for a change so this morning I got out the weed whipper and started clearing the hiking trail that I cut last year. Itís not much of a trail but if I walk slowly, I can stretch my walk out to 20 minutes without having to repeat myself. When I cut the trail I had lofty ambitions of running it everyday though that ended when I started the new house construction. Construction is done so Iím looking at resuming some sort of walking/jogging exercise regime.

The trail runs along a section of King Creek and goes up a hill to the upper east border of our property. At the top I placed a park bench where I have a nice view to the west and I can almost see the Pacific Ocean.

Iím not much at plant identification though I have learned to recognize Poison Oak. Interestingly, Poison Oak is one of the few plants in our area that display beautiful fall colors. The sycamore leaves donít change color as much as they just seem to fade away and most of the oaks in our area are evergreen. That leaves the Poison Oak with the responsibility of getting me into the spirit of autumn.

I can also notice the change of season in the morning. Weíve had some nights get down into the 30ís and Iíve even turned the heat on a couple of times. By far, the most dramatic weather events we get at this time of year are the Santa Anna winds. They normally start in October and at the location of our new house, winds can reach 80 mph. Several of our neighbors have had windows blow in so Iíve arranged to have hurricane shutters put on our north facing windows.

Wind, fire and flood are our biggest concerns out here. In a month or two Iíll start describing our flood prevention measures.


Tis the season to be itchy
 

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