Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Do You See It Now?

Life Among the Elephants...or
Living in a Red Section of a
Blue State With Rainbows

The mountains you see in the pictures, the snow covered mountains, is what I woke up to this morning. So beautiful. This is my view from the back of our home, and with both the family room and master located at opposite areas at the rear of the house, it truly is a million dollar view not only from the back yard and pool area, but from within the house itself.

We live in the Las Pelonas foothills across the valley floor from the range you see, known as the Tehachapi Mountains, home of the famous Grapevine (Interstate 5) that closes for hours and hours at a time when the snow falls hard. So, anyway, that light dusting of snow that I (and, apparently, only I) saw the other day was part of the decidedly heavier snowfall in the mountains you see in these pictures. Most of the snow from the recent storms only fell to about 3500 feet. We live at about 3400 feet above sea level and about 25 miles from the Tehachapi range, as the crows fly.

This is one of two areas in Southern California known as the High Desert. The other area is in the San Gabriel Mountains, specifically the towns of Victorville and Hesperia that one passes on the way to Las Vegas. The most famous Low Desert area would be Palm Springs, although it is usually called, simply, "the desert," because people who live there are under the sad illusion that it is the only desert. They do have better restaurants, the scenery in Palm Springs is gorgeous, and the place is a part-time favorite of snowbird retirees from places in the Midwest. The High Desert area grows Joshua trees, fields of wild poppies, the yucca, a fierce desert wind, and a fairly rabid, vocal, but small, group of racist and homophobic uber Conservatives. Palm Springs, on the other hand, grows Date Palms, golf courses, perpetual tans and...a stylish and eclectic group of residents and vacationers. So why live here? Because the makeup of this area is changing rapidly...and has changed for the better in the five years we've been here. More tolerance, more diversity. Things take time. And you have to agree, the views from our little slice of heaven are great.

The High Desert can be a tough place to assimilate, but we do smile at the frequent and gigantic rainbows that cross from one mountain range to the other after, and sometimes during, our desert storms and microbursts. Nature, it seems, not only abhors a vacuum but is also a big fan of symbolism. So you see, "Someone" is doing something about the weather.

Weather Captain,
Geography General and
Political Opinionhead Margaret, over and out.


azteclady said...

*grinning from ear to ear* Well, I see the snow now. What do I win?

And the view is definitely gorgeous *sigh* I miss the mountains...

Occasional Guest Blogger said...

"Nature, it seems, not only abhors a vacuum but is also a big fan of symbolism."

I'm delighted with this sentence. Thanks.

T.T. Thomas said...

Azetc...in what state do you live? Oh and---what do you get? The resorts here are looking for ski instructors---how 'bout a snowjob? (teehee)

T.T. Thomas said...

Thanks Robin ::whew:: And thanks for NOT mentioning a couple typos, now fixed. I think.

azteclady said...

I live in a big sandbar in the Atlantic--otherwise known as Florida.

Flatter'n a pancake.

A snowjob? *ponders* Is that in any way similar to a....?


T.T. Thomas said...

Oh, I'm so happy---I just realized I could make those snow-capped mountains my desktop at work!

Aztec...Florida? Don't they have those giant palmetto bugs?

My friend Brenda Sue lives in Florida...and then another friend, 406, lives there, and a couple of my long-lost cousins live there. I visited Florida once on my way to Haiti, and once on my way to St. Thomas. This was so long ago that Baby Doc was still ruling Haiti and St Thomas was not so overun with tourists. Ihave to admit, I love the various islands...not so sure about Florida though!

karyn said...

azteclady said...
"*grinning from ear to ear* Well, I see the snow now. What do I win?"

uh..a guided tour? come ovah!!

.....we'll let you touch our joshua trees ;)

azteclady said...

karyn said, "we'll let you touch our joshua trees"


And that's code for...?


I'd love to visit *sigh* The eldest kidlet is attending CalTech, and I've been dying to go importune erm... visit him. *sigh*

By the way, my OCD struck again: it's assimilate, not assimulate (first line, last paragraph)

T.T. Thomas said...

"It's assimilate..."

Why yes, yes it is!

OCD ::guffaw:: Maybe I should have that affliction!

azteclady said...

Well, unless you wanted to simulate an ass?

*ducking rotting veggies*

OCD: not really, but typos tend to jump at me, I don't know why.