caillebotte_man at his window

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Twelve

Saturday was grey anticipation, the cool air expectant, the tentative showers like a tease. Not until nightfall did the rain really begin, and then it grew slowly, hour after hour, until by midnight there was a steady fall and the downspouts began to sing. Since then the wind has risen, and at times fierce downpours rattle across the roof and windblown drops spatter the windows with drum tattoos. It's an actual storm, after so many months of trivial drips and dribbles! I have just listened for hours, and will go on listening until I fall asleep. Welcome back, rain.

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laszlo moholy-nagy_chx

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Eleven

Friday I took another midnight nap, though all I'd intended was to try to straighten out a kink in my back. Lying on my back for a few minutes ought to have done it, but somehow I dozed off and didn't wake up for four hours. Maybe the worst part is that when I woke up, the kink was still in my back. Later I ate the last piece of cheesecake that had been sitting in the refrigerator since a week ago last Monday, and shortly thereafter had the feeling that it was about to come back up. Can you get food poisoning from eleven-day-old cheesecake? For about two hours it felt like I had, but eventually it subsided, and since then I've snacked on other things without mishap. I guess I'll survive.

Friday was another mostly overcast but mostly dry day. The Huge Wet is supposed to arrive early Sunday and continue through Monday morning. The forecast is now predicting almost six inches of rain in parts of the valley, including the mini-metropolis, and close to a foot in some parts of the mountains. Things could get nasty in the extensive burn scars of this year's fires. Things could get nasty right here if we get one of those very wet cells parked over the neighborhood, like we did in the spring of 2019. I got quite a lot of water in the apartment. Perhaps a fall storm won't be so aggressive, though. I hope not. I've got a lot more stuff I don't want to get wet now.

I'm out of donuts again, but don't want to ask anybody to fetch me any until after the storms have passed. I often wish that we had a donut shop within walking-on-ingrown-toenail distance here. That would be like, down at the end of the block. There is actually a house for sale there right now. Maybe somebody will buy it an open an illegal donuts shop in it. Highly improbable, of course, like all of my fantasies. I still enjoy indulging in it. Though not as much as I'd enjoy an actual donut. I guess it will be cookies for breakfast again today.

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Ten

Thursday stayed overcast all day but brought no significant rain. Only after midnight did the sky finally open up. Since then we've had three periods of heavy rain lasting ten or fifteen minutes each, with sprinkles or drizzles between. It's supposed to continue today and again tomorrow, but the real show is likely to begin Monday, when the region might get anywhere from two to four inches of rain. There is actually going to be a flood watch in effect.

But the rain is not doing much to wake me up. I'm still dozing off more often than I'd like, and starting to wonder if this is my new normal. It sometimes feels like being in a coma but still walking around. I'm also getting very tired of yawning so much. I suppose it's only a matter of time before I dislocate my jaw, Unless I fall out of my chair and break my neck first. But at least I've gotten to see it rain again.

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Nine

Wednesday afternoon I slept again, oblivious until after five o'clock, when I woke to see the late sun declining among thickening clouds. The mist and drizzle and sprinkling returned, but still no full-on rain has fallen. It's as though storm season is having a tough time getting its engines started. That's expected to change over the next several days, and we are supposed to get some actual downpours. Nothing like they'll be getting in the northwest, but it's likely that this series of storms will bring California's fire season to an end, at least in the north. Los Angeles might keep burning through the entire winter.

It's grown quite nippy out, as well as damp, and I'm a bit surprised at how chilly I've been feeling. Usually I don't feel this cold until later in the season. Perhaps it was the rapid transition from hot weather to cold weather that brought it on. In any case, I'm wearing a hoodie indoors, and putting a puffer jacket on over it when I go outside. I'm missing the fresh air, especially since the restarted furnace smell is lingering still. I'm also stuck with an abundance of warm weather sandwich fixings, and have not yet made the transition to more autumnal foods. I did open a can of minestrone the other night and ate half of it with a grilled cheese sandwich, but so far I've had nothing I would consider a proper hot meal.

My sleep schedule, such as it is, remains rather deranged, and I'd be happy to have it more normal, but I'm not expecting that. I suspect I've reached the age when good night's (or even good day's) sleep is apt to remain no more than a fond memory, at least until my memory too fails utterly. The latter event might not be long delayed. Thank goodness that once that happens, the pain my ingrown toenail generates when I walk more than a hundred feet will prevent me from going out and wandering around in the rain in search of waffles or a burrito. They'd put me away in the home for senile delinquents for sure.

I sure would like some waffles, though. Or a burrito.

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Eight

I didn't feel like writing anything Tuesday evening, so I went to sleep, though I don't remember if it was before or after midnight, and then woke up after six o'clock this morning, and I'm still tired and still don't feel like writing anything. It's been sprinkling or drizzling or misting off and on since Tuesday afternoon, which is quite lovely, but it seems to be making me want to hibernate. I might try that. I might start right now.

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Seven

It took quite a while to get to sleep Monday morning, but it was still overcast, so the light leaking around and through the blinds wasn't too bad. By the time I woke up the afternoon was partly sunny, and the clouds were breaking up. This storm didn't bring much rain to the mini-metropolis— less than a fifth of an inch— but there is likely to be more over the next few days, starting Tuesday night. A little bit of snow fell in the mountains, though not enough to make a dent in the water shortage.

A La Nina condition is apparently forming in the Pacific, which means rain is more likely than usual in the Pacific Northwest and less likely than usual in Southern California, but for Northern California it's a crap shoot. It could be more, it could be less, or it could be about normal. Normal wouldn't help much, and less would be a catastrophe, so we're hoping for more. The odds are not great.

It has also gotten much colder, and as I expected, the furnace came on a while ago, and having been off for a few months it reeked. It's likely to go on reeking for a while, and it's likely to come on fairly frequently for the next few days. It smells rather like an old blanket that wet dogs slept on, which then dried out in a dusty room inhabited by old people who have given up bathing. Actually, I think that might be what I smell like, too, and maybe that's why I always get used to it after a while.

I'm still craving snacks and have no idea what snacks I want, only that the ones I've actually got are not satisfactory. At the moment I'm considering making some oatmeal with ginger in it and maybe putting some maple syrup on it. Molasses would be better, but I have none. I should add that to my shopping list next time, but probably won't remember.

There was no nap tonight, but then I did wake up very sad Monday afternoon, which might have put me off sleeping. I suspect that I had sad dreams, which I did not remember, but they left their aura behind them in my mood. It took a couple of hours to dig out of it, with the help of music videos of a more cheerful nature, including an arrangement of Gershwin's Rhapsody in Blue for solo marimba. It's hard to be sad when you hear a marimba. I still managed for quite a while. It's been a pretty sad year.

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Six

The rain was long delayed Sunday, clouds forming only gradually in the afternoon sky, and the first drops falling as dusk arrived. It has been mostly sprinkles, brief showers, and mist, and I have yet to hear anything trickling from the downspouts. It's possible there was some heavier rain during the long nap I took from eleven o'clock Sunday night until three o'clock this morning, but if so it left no evidence.

There was angel hair pasta with marinara for dinner, with a salad and plain buttered bread, the available bread not being of a type suited for making garlic toast. The starchy meal might have contributed to the irresistible urge to nap. Since I woke I've been craving a snack of some kind, but can't figure out what. I did eat a small slice of cheesecake, but it failed to satisfy the craving. Right now I'm munching some chips, but they don't seem to be helping either. The thought of a waffle has crossed my mind, but I no longer have a waffle iron, and those toaster waffles I had in the freezer for a while were so bad that I tossed them out some time ago.

The sun will be coming up before long. Already I hear the morning traffic picking up on the freeway. The rain, such as it is, is expected to continue through morning, but I might see some sunlight this afternoon. It's going to be chilly all day, for the first time in months. I'm expecting the furnace to come on sometime today or tonight. It's sure to smell bad, as it always does when it starts up for the first time each year. I think of it as the odor of summer's decaying corpse. That makes it oddly cheering.
caillebotte_man at his window

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Five

Days seem shorter once they are over than they do when they lie ahead. When I woke up Saturday afternoon there were at least three hours o daylight remaining. There were also no cars parked on the property. A perfect time to do the laundry, I thought. Nobody's here. But I drank some orange juice, and checked the email, and went out back to listen for the mockingbird, then back in to eat the last cupcake and drink some iced tea, and when I looked outside again there was a car parked, and a few minutes later another car, and soon a third car, and I smelled soap in the air, meaning someone was using the laundry room. It's a curse that it takes me so long to fully wake up.

Other things happened, and the sun settled lower, then vanished, and the birds fell silent, and it seemed not long at all before I was looking back from late night wondering where the time had gone. I believe videos were involved. There was also dishwashing, and then re-dirtying of dishes with dinner, and some reading, and some thinking about making some plans to think about making some plans to think or some such thing, but it all seems so vague now. But looking back it seems to have taken no time at all, though the time has surely gone.

Now it is very late and there would be stars to see if the mini-metropolis did not wash them out with its lights. I should be getting back to sleep again soon, and when I wake up there is a good chance there will be rain falling and a relentless grayness, and probably some wind. I've set the thermostat to fire up the heat when it gets down to 68 degrees in here, which it might do today or might do early Monday. That summer that seemed so long while it was passing has turned vague, too, like some brief episode of fever. Did I live through that, or did I merely dream through one hot night that I was still alive? I guess I'll wait and see if I still get wet when it rains.

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gericault_raft of the medusa 1

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Four

After my Thursday midnight nap, Friday went strange on me and I slept from about eleven o'clock in the morning until four o'clock in the afternoon. The mockingbird decided to hang around until ten or fifteen minutes after I went outside, which did cheer me up a bit, but I still felt out of sorts all evening. I almost went back to bed before midnight, but instead just catnapped for an hour or so in front of the computer while playing a music video repeatedly. I won't say which video because it was embarrassingly cheesy, but it suited my mood.

Since then, more empty hours for my empty head, as the chill night passes. Running the clock down. I haven't even felt like snacking, or drinking, or much of anything other than watching more cheesy videos. Mostly I'm just looking forward to getting back to sleep. It's gotten to be about that time. Another warm day today, and then a near certainty of rain on Sunday, followed by an actually cold Monday. Maybe the rain and cold will energize me, or maybe they will send me scurrying for my blankets. Maybe the raindrops will remind me of a clock ticking, ticking, ticking. But the alarm is broken.

Reset Thirty-Five, Day Three

Thursday afternoon I woke up at an almost reasonable (for me) hour, shortly before two o'clock, but then by nine o'clock in the evening I was nodding off, and finally had to go take a nap. Oddly enough I then woke up at almost two o'clock in the morning, after which I prepared a belated dinner and spent the next few hours on the Internet, trying to figure out, with no success, why the hell I'm here. I'm starting to suspect that the Internet doesn't actually know everything.

Today is supposed to be fairly warm, with a high of 80 degrees, but the apartment cooled off nicely overnight so I'm not worried that the air conditioner will come on again. Saturday is to be 83, but I think we'll escape the need for air conditioning again thanks to tonight's expected low of 49. Then Sunday the day will get cool again, and there is even a possibility of showers. The high Monday is predicted to be only 63, which means I might have to fire up the furnace that night when it starts heading down to 42. That was a short autumn this year.

I'm enjoying the return of the mockingbird each afternoon. The first thing I do after I get up and pour my orange juice is check the back yard to see if the concert is underway. It was Thursday, and I expect it will be again today, which is one reason I hope to get back to sleep fairly soon, so I can get up in time to hear it. I don't like those days when I don't wake up until late afternoon, especially now that the afternoons are getting much shorter.

Okay, brain is blanking. Time for chocolate.