Armchair Peregrinations

September 21, 2002

The last days of summer pass in a hot and humid haze, a sweaty and profusely uncomfortable reminder that the dog days of summer yip and yap about our heels well into the beginning harvest month of September. One would never know there is such a season as fall, or even the possibility of the season, in the Lowcountry of South Carolina, until the past two days. Then, the oppressiveness lifted each glorious morning and afternoon when it was actually possible to be out walking, minus the heavy, hot hand of summer slapping me on the back. I enjoyed it immensely.

There is also the most subtly distinct and indefinable, almost indescribable feeling of change in the air, along with the noticeable reveral for the better in outdoor comfort levels. Now the real business of dealing with the emotional nuances of the *real* September are once again apparent to me. It requires some work, some getting used to. It means I must be prepared to act and think differently. Each season has its unique effect on me, and none more so than fall.

September 9, 2002

This afternoon as I was coming home, I kept glancing out the car window at the skies. They were so extraordinary. There is nothing which gives me such hope as the exquisite beauty of skies and clouds around sunset.

I got home and went to the bedoom window and looked in awe at the breaks in the clouds where the blue was so pure and intense it was as if I had never seen that color or hue before.

I returned five minutes later and it was gone, of course, the skies dark, and night settling in. Like all revelations, the majesty of each sunset is impermanent, transitory. And unlike any that has ever come before.

September 3, 2002

Ah, such beautiful skies outside my window this late morning in early September. Puffy little clouds have appeared in what was a clear blue sky. The wind is rustling gently in the oak tree, and I have to go to work soon. But, I'm enjoying this quiet interlude at home before then.

Last night at the beach, the skies were exceedingly interesting. Huge, dynamic, changing constantly, full of color from the setting sun, gradations of light until the colors faded after sunset. They completely dominated the horizon. They were complex, revealing, interesting. Sometimes, the clouds over the ocean seem to be like big, teeming cities in the distance. For some odd reason. They seem to have a life of their own. They seem like places, destinations.

Little quick showers of rain passed over the beach as night fell and I returned to the house. It's nice to be at the beach in every type of weather.

Labor Day has come and gone, and summer is over, symbolically, but we have a lot more of the season left in this month, and I will be enjoying the ocean and believing it is still summer for weeks to come.

September 1, 2002

September dawns gray and raining, days on end of this weather, a complete contrast to the months of hot, sunny and dry weather during our extended drought. Now the reverse has occurred. A seemingly endless string of rainy days, many with flooding downpours, but a lot of slow soaking rain also.

It is a fact that the climate is changing by manmade agent such as burning coal and oil -- the greenhouse effect -- and is getting warmer. This is causing worldwide extremes of drought and flooding never seen before in recorded weather history.

We have so thoughtlessly relied on fossil fuels to drive our economy and lifestyles that we are now paying the price. It will only get worse because we have done so much damage to the fragile climatic balance on our dear Earth.

It makes me sad and angry to see people driving gas-guzzling SUVs and trucks on countless short errands in suburbs and commuting to work in these atrocious energy wasters. Where are the electric cars and high speed trains, the weaning away from these glutinous fossil fuels? As long as the wealth flowed from oil, there has been no incentive to change forms of production to cleaner, more efficient technologies, although the technolgy is available for hybrid cars, at the least. When will we learn?

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