Poop on the Patio

It’s been raining ever since 2023 started, pretty much nonstop. We aren’t used to this in sunny California. We’ve been in a twenty-year drought for well, twenty years. Usually Seattle gets this weather, not us.

I can’t walk the dogs. I can’t work in the yard. But I can feed the critters and watch them running around in the wet. They don’t seem to care. The squirrels throw their tails up onto their backs and use them as a raincoat.

My dogs care. Two of the three have resorted to pooping on the patio, where a hard steady surface is preferable to squatting in the mud.

Speaking of mud, the creek three blocks downhill from my house spilled out of its banks and flooded streets, yards, and some houses, leaving a thick coat of mud. I watched one neighbor take a shovel to the silt that was almost a foot deep in his front yard.

Another neighbor, with a hill behind their house, cut into it a few years back to add a wine cellar. Now the entire hill to the left of the cellar has collapsed, along with the yard up above, the fence and part of their yard.  The neighbors below had two towering pine trees leaning toward their house. Those have been cut down, but the hill of mud continues to slide down onto the side fence, smaller trees, and their patio. What a mess.

Our greenbelt lost half of a eucalyptus tree in high winds, its limbs broken into several pieces when they hit the ground.

My beach town is a mess, and I’m waiting for a break in the weather tomorrow to run down there and check on my flat-roofed house, my falling-down fence and my six-story-high Monterey pine in the front yard.

The weatherman was wrong about yesterday. He said the rain would end around 9:00 a.m. My two adult kids and I had bought timed tickets to the Ramses Egyptian artifacts exhibit at the de Young museum in San Francisco, so we left at 10:00, and I drove through pouring rain, which turned to hail after my car was safely parked in the underground garage. That $26.50 parking fee might have been worth it.

The $93.00 dollar cafeteria lunch seemed too pricey until I saw the receipt. There was a $5.00 health tax on top of the regular 9% sales tax, and one of my offspring had put an eight-dollar pyramid-shaped chocolate mousse on the tray, raspberry filled, so what-ev. It was an eventful long day, and then I had to go to two hours of chorus after that.

It’s okay. It’s still the holidays as long as my grad student is in the house. Our Christmas was different this year with the passing of my older sis just days before. I never even unpacked the Christmas tubs.

 What’s money anyway, if not to spend?

What’s a little poop on the patio when the rain is falling like nobody’s seen in two decades?

What are we doing on this planet, if not to feed the water-logged critters that share our neighborhoods with us?

My cold hands need me to get up from my laptop and clean something.

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