Of Summer, Of Love

This page written circa 1 April, 2001.

Kay and Meri and Teddy stayed in Aus after the tribulations of last week. I have returned to Santa Rosa for 5 weeks, but I have to cross the Pacific again in May for ISCAS which is in Sydney. So it is I am alone again.

A marvellous vista greeted me upon my return: The lawn had grown inches in the 12 days of absence, the maple has begun to leaf, the apple trees are a mass of blossom, the strawberries are spreading, the garden is abuzz with insects, the California poppies and the wildflowers are in full swing. Spring has arrived like shockwave. The seasons in Sydney are so alike, but here Summer is just glorious, warm, long, dry, full of life, compared to Winter which is drab, wet, dark, and depressing. If it snowed as it does in the East it might be less depressing (I think snow beats mud, Dan).

I understood, coming to live here, the impact that the passing of Summer could have to promote Seasonal Affective Disorder. I read about this condition over the years in New Scientist and passed it off as a malady of the weak minded. The onset of depression is palpable. The garden becomes dull and in places impassable, or not worth passing. It is like coming off a high. Conversely, I positively feel the thrill Danny described, even if it is spread thinly over a season rather than being heaped on one night.

I wrote before about restarting the great engine to banish the dark side of solitude. The steam is rising again, but it is pushing against an extra load: I miss Merinda tremendously. Kay not any more than last time. Not Teddy yet---he is more cute than loving. But I worry in case something was to happen to Meri. I would be very wounded if I lost her now. I recall in 1978 not being able to appreciate what Godfrey was feeling when his little daughter died, and the photos of her on his wall leapt out at me when I visited last month. I do not think I like being this dependent upon a single, fragile thing. Nevertheless, there it is, I am pining for her hugs.

I write this page to record that I have two new factors bearing on my state of happiness. Both have a price: For Summer I pay with Winter, for the love of Merinda and Kay I pay with the risk of losing them. I remain unsure about whether the upsides are each worth their prices, but there is no doubt in my mind that they enable living in Santa Rosa.

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