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White [Feb. 22nd, 2018|08:02 pm]
We finally got snow. There isn't very much— blades of grass still poke through it— but it did manage to stick to the pine needles and the bare twigs and branches of the other trees, and when for a few minutes late this afternoon the late sun managed to get through the clouds, all the icy details gleamed brightly. It was a splendid scene which, had I had a camera, I would surely have photographed. The sky to the south was still dark blue-gray, and to the east was bright blue, so the contrast between the snowy, white trees and the sky made them stand out vividly.

The snow didn't really get started until afternoon, though a few hours earlier we had some brief flurries, and for a few minutes there were some astonishingly large flakes drifting down. I am actually surprised that we got as much as we did, and greatly enjoyed seeing the white landscape for a change. Most of it will probably be gone by tomorrow afternoon, though it's going to be quite cold again, so any place that is shaded most oft he day is likely to be preserved.

There is some possibility of more snow later tonight, but probably not very much. Tomorrow is supposed to be sunny, and as of tonight no more rain is predicted until late Sunday night and Monday morning. I suppose that could turn to snow, too, but the forecast isn't officially saying so. It is currently predicting snow early in the morning a week from Friday and then late that night and early Saturday, but a week is really too far off to be sure of anything.

The feral cats have never seen snow actually cover the ground before, and a few reacted with displeasure, though others were fascinated by the unfamiliar substance. There isn't enough on the ground for them to play in, as my cats Dude and Touché used to do. Those guys just loved running through heaps of drifted snow, chasing one another.

I just went out to look at the night. The clouds are scattering, and the half full moon is dimly illuminating the snow on the ground, but the trees are no longer gleaming, so I suppose they have lost most of their thin coating of snow. Too bad. It might have been worth enduring the nocturnal chill a bit longer had the trees still been white.
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More Winter [Feb. 21st, 2018|09:07 pm]
My local local weather station, which is a pretty reliable guide to our microclimate, is offline tonight, so I have to make do with comparing two other stations, one at a slightly higher elevation and one slightly lower. The slightly higher one is predicting a one hour window for snow tomorrow, from eleven o'clock. I suppose I might be awake at that hour, and if it falls I'll get to see it, if it gets down this far. The slightly lower station is predicting only possible showers tomorrow.

The next snow prediction after that is Thursday, but only for about two hours in the morning. After that, there could be snow Friday morning and then late Friday evening. Saturday isn't in the forecast yet. I'm still hoping that we get at least some snow out of all this nasty cold. But then a watched pot never boils, they say. Though a boiling pot surely makes a bad metaphor for snow, unless it means that a snowstorm is a nice time for a hot cup of tea and some biscuits.

Today I remembered to check the new ads on the grocery web sites, so my shopping list for the week is made out already. There's not much on it again, as not very much stuff I want is on sale. I don't know why the stores have had so few good deals this month, but I hope they do better in March. I'm going to run low on the stuff I've stocked up on over the last few months if I have to keep getting into it, and I'll need to replenish it.

My sleep schedule has been getting odd again, and I'm not sure when I'll be likely to conk out tonight. This might be an insomnia night, since I've overslept quite a bit lately and insomnia usually follows that. I'd just as soon get the insomnia night over with before the weekend, as I don't want it interfering with the shopping trip.

Or maybe I can just go on oversleeping until the cold weather is over. A semi-hibernation. That would be nice.

I'll bet all those birds who flew north earlier this month are regretting it now. If I go out and listen maybe I'll hear them coming back.
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Shiver [Feb. 20th, 2018|09:38 pm]
Damn but it's cold! Yet the window of opportunity for snow Thursday morning has been narrowed to a single hour from 3:00 to 4:00 AM. But then a week from Thursday, which will be March 1, the forecast now says there is a 60% possibility of snow most of the day, except for a couple of hours in the afternoon when it might turn to rain. That's along way off, of course, and the forecast will undoubtedly change, but it's nice to think of a snowy day. And by then all the flowers that bloomed prematurely will already be long dead, so no loss there.

But the fact that it's still going to be cold enough to snow at the beginning of March makes me wonder how long this reborn winter is going to persist. There won't be much time after that (ten days or so, I think) until PG&E totals up my next bill, and if it stays cold until then my March could end up being even higher than my January bill was. That would be terribly inconvenient, as my January bill was very high indeed.

Right now I'm impulsively ruining my dinner with a cheap, off-brand donut from a package of half a dozen I bought at the Grocery Outlet Sunday. It has a revoltingly sweet glaze on it. I'm thinking maybe I could palm the rest of them off on my nephew. He's eaten enough of my good stuff over the years, so he should at least be willing to eat these things to make up for it. I am going to go make some ramen now. Maybe it will get the taste of excessive sugar out of my mouth. I hope I don't fall into a diabetic coma before I can reach the kitchen.
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Dozer [Feb. 19th, 2018|10:05 pm]
This afternoon the deranged weather brought a few flurries of popcorn snow, a little bit more than we had yesterday. The actual snow which had been predicted for later in the week has vanished from the forecast, though a narrow window of snowpportunity has appeared for very early Thursday morning. Most likely I'll be asleep at that time, and it probably won't happen anyway. Everything about the weather is up in the air this month. The cold, cold air.

The soreness in my back has been very gradually diminishing, so I haven't yet made any extra appointment with the chiropractor. I'm hoping to avoid it, although if I do end up needing it, it will at least not be as much of a strain on my budget due to the surprising fact that my gas and electric bill was about fifty dollars less than I'd expected. Next month's bill will probably be higher than I'd planned for though, thanks to this ten-and-counting days of uncommonly cold weather.

Whoa, just sat on the couch for a minute and dozed off, and now a couple of hours have passed. Way to get things done. I've been sleeping a lot recently. Maybe it's the relentless chill in the air, even with the furnace going. Or maybe it's the furnace. Maybe I'm getting carbon monoxide poisoning. I suppose I should have the thing serviced. But right now I have to get the wheelie bins out. I don't think Presidents Day is one of the holidays that causes a one-day delay in the pickup.

Need dinner too. Does carbon monoxide poisoning make you hungry?
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Freeze [Feb. 18th, 2018|08:55 pm]
The online weather forecast greets me with the news that tomorrow will be much colder than today. So will the next day, and the next, and the next, and so on for at least nine days. There will be nine nights of freezing cold. Today a flurry of popcorn snow fell as I was leaving the first grocery store. There must have been rain early this morning or late last night as the streets were damp when I woke, but I slept through it. It was cold all day, even when the sun came out, even when there was a sunshower.

So that's what I'm looking at. At least a week of actual winter, and a prediction of snow this coming Thursday, and maybe a bit more the following Monday morning. Well, we'll be glad to have it, and any rain that comes along as well, as the mountain snowpack is thin and the water situation next summer is looking grim. But the storms aren't very wet, and the forecast never quite reaches 100% for any of the predicted rain and snow days, so there might not be much snow in those storms, and anyway its too late in the season to catch up with the shortfall even if we were to get a whole series of storms that actually are wet. Which we almost certainly won't.

But I managed to get the shopping done, and will not starve for another week at least, and din't even feel miserably cold doing it. The feeling miserable will probably come tomorrow when I go outside to feed he feral cats and dump the ice out of their water bowls and replace the water, assuming the pipes aren't frozen, but I won't have to go anywhere and can just stay indoors burning money in the form of gas for the furnace. The cats are the ones who will be really miserable. The ones who don't fight with Portia will get to come in for the night, of course, if they are brave enough.

Anyway. The shopping took a big chunk out of the day, most of the earlier part of which I slept away. I should go cook one of the things I bought today, then watch television from under a pile of blankets. It's supposed to hit 33 degrees around ten o'clock. Then get back up to 42 sometime tomorrow afternoon. Brrr. So weird. So disorienting.

Sunday Verse (well, Prosepoem)Collapse )
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Hello, Winter Part II [Feb. 17th, 2018|08:24 pm]
Today was the last fairly mild day we're likely to have for quite some time. There could be rain later tonight, and tomorrow morning as well. It will probably be over by the time I have to go shopping tomorrow afternoon. A bigger problem might be waking up early enough to get ready in time.

Today I woke up about six o'clock in the morning after sleeping a bit less than four hours. Then I couldn't get back to sleep until around eight o'clock. I thought I'd wake up again by noon, but didn't until two o'clock this afternoon. If that happens tomorrow, as draggy as I get for the first hour or so after waking up, I'd never be able to get ready by three, when I'm supposed to leave.

I checked the forecast from a weather station that's about half a mile up the ridge, at an elevation mot much higher than mine, and next week there are three periods when they might be getting snow. The series of storms late next week won't be very large, but they will be pretty cold, so there is some slight chance of snow this far down. Of course there's no certainty that we'll even get rain. What we'll certainly get is cold.

There is enough cash on hand that I won't have to do triage on my shopping list this week, but unfortunately there isn't very much stuff I want on sale, either. I'll have to decide if I want to get a few things at full price, or save more of the money for next week and hope there are more sale items I want then. One of the things that is on sale this week is ramen, so I might end up eating a lot of that. At least it's suitable for the cold weather we'll be getting.

Tonight I'm microwaving the last of the frozen fish sticks and French fries. It will be quick, so I can be ready to watch English people murder one another on television at nine o'clock with appropriate "fish and chips" of a sort. It's a full life I lead. Or is it a leaden life, and I'm full of it?
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Won't Stand For It, or Sit Still For It [Feb. 16th, 2018|09:06 pm]
The season is being very annoying. Full-on winterness, minus the snow, is now predicted for several upcoming days. From Sunday to Sunday the highs will be in the forties or fifties, and every night will be freezing or below. If this is right then there go all the blossoms all over town, including my camellias and sourgrass, and also the new growth on my rose bushes. Chances of rain are predicted now and then, but never more than 50% and usually substantially less. I strongly disapprove of this behavior. I'm sure the feral cats will, too.

My back remains irritable, and I can neither sit nor stand for very long. The only position that I can stay in for long is horizontal, so I'll be going off to watch the television now. English people murdering one another tonight, so at least I've got that. I might have to make an extra appointment with the chiropractor if it doesn't get better this weekend. Bad timing for the extra payment, though, since the cold spell means I'll be getting a larger gas bill than I"d expected in March.
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Complaint [Feb. 15th, 2018|11:28 pm]
Internet keeps distracting me and my dinner gets later and later. I really have to stop that.

Plus other web sites ate the time I'd have used to write tonights journal entry, while I starved.

It's cold in here.
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Probably [Feb. 14th, 2018|10:58 pm]
As I'd expected after yesterday's major back adjustment I was pretty sore today. I might not get back to normal until after the next adjustment. Sitting in this chair for more than ten minutes at a time is very unpleasant, so today's Internet was chopped into little slices and went very slowly.

Portia is displeased that she doesn't get to take long naps on my lap. She'll get to curl up next to me for hours when I go to sleep, so I'm not wasting any sympathy on her, especially considering that I'll probably wake up with her bum in my face tomorrow, as I do so many days.

It looks like the cool to cold weather will hold for another ten days at least, though the only rain in the forecast is a 46% possibility of showers Sunday morning. So, winter temperatures (and gas bill) but no water. So far the plants aren't complaining, but I wouldn't be surprised if I have to start irrigating them later this month.

Eh, I've lost the thread (such as it was) of my thoughts coming and going, trying to keep my back from seizing up again. I need to go eat something. Probably food.
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Adjusted [Feb. 13th, 2018|10:09 pm]
My back problem turned out, not surprisingly, to be a displacement of the sacroiliac. After a few attempts, the chiropractor finally got it back into its proper place, though I have to be careful with it for some time, and I'll probably be sore for a few days. Because it was out of place for quite a while I ended up twisting some other joints, and they will also take a while to readjust. My hips are both pretty sore tonight, and I won't be sitting for long. If they don't improve by next week I might have to make another appointment. Otherwise I'll be going back in four weeks, as usual.

I stopped at the store on the way home and picked up a few items they were out of Sunday or that I just didn't feel like hoisting from the shelves (usually lower ones that would have necessitated bending or stooping, neither of which I wanted to do.) If I get no relapse shopping should be easier next week.

Although winter is definitely back, there were things blooming all over town. Rather distressingly a few freezing nights are forecast next week. Those plants are going to regret having bloomed, if plants have regrets. I will certainly regret their having bloomed, as when actual spring arrives it's going to be less colorful than it would have been had they not.

It's getting very uncomfortable sitting here. I'm going to go make some soup and watch the television
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