Snow! And rain, too!

I love that my blog reading list is full of snow-joy today, people dancing around as the first snows of the year reach them. Back when I lived and worked in snow-producing climes, many folks I knew hated the snow and the hassles that went with it, so I’d often be the only person I knew who listened to forecasted snowfall predictions with the same sense of rising anticipation I always felt as a kid.

I still love snow. There are many reasons I moved the desert, but a dislike of snow and cold weather wasn’t one of them.

Very very rarely, we do get snow here on the desert floor, but for the most part, winter is about getting good soaking winter rainstorms (or else not getting them, and worrying about that). Last weekend was our first real winter storm, the sort of cold steady rain that makes one eager to get a good thick soup going on the stove.

Late yesterday morning, as I walked through the fine misting rain that followed the heavier rain of the night before, I came to a bridge that looked down over our local wash. The water had already flowed on, giving way to muddy sand–and to the things the water had caught as it flowed through.

Our rivers don’t flow often here, but when they do flow, they often flow swift and fast, and you can see the debris they’ve caught going by. The water was gone, but the debris remained, a sort of echo or reminder of the rushing waters now gone. Looking down into the wash, I saw:

– A metal crutch
– An open suitcase, a few scraps of indistinguishable fabric clinging to it
– A brown wooden cabinet door
– A thick bolt of maroon cloth that might have been a rug or might have been a curtain
– A bent metal pole
– Candy wrappers and soda bottles

I wonder where they came from, and what stories the river stole them out of, and how far from home that river left them, when the water finally went down.

Walking on, I later saw one other sign of the winter rains: a pair of small rubber sandals shoes on the sidewalk, left neatly piled one on top of the other. Left behind by someone who, perhaps, took them off to play in the puddles the rain had also left behind (and which unlike the river water, weren’t quite gone yet), and who forgot to come back to reclaim them again.

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