Anyone who thought the recent heat wave in September signaled an extended summer changed their minds this week. Got down to the Farmer’s Market at eight Saturday morning to busk, temperature 34ºF in the sun. I’m a fingerpicker and I struggled. My daughter and son-in-law’s band did not smile until the sun came out around ten thirty.
The wind has whipped all week, rips apples off my grand old tree faster than I can rake them. In retaliation for all the downed apples, we’re making crisps to freeze, cider, and next week I’ll start working on some apple butter.
But the skies opened every morning this week without a cloud. We haven’t seen white around the sun in a long spell—a bit odd for autumn in the Pacific Northwest. By mid-afternoon, I played with my Chihuahuas in the backyard—temperature 81ºF. NOAA predicts slight rain for the middle of next week. Still, the old timers who I ran into at the hardware, deli, and liquor stores this afternoon talked only about the oddness of the weather.
The ice of the last glacial age Earth disappeared a measly ten thousand years ago. Just twenty-two thousand years ago, the glaciers of that period were at their peak. The whole thing, according to geologists, lasted one hundred thousand years.
I tend to think that we’re changing our climate. But climates do change of their own accord, and temperatures on Earth would have to shift significantly for sheets of ice to cover more than two-thirds of the Northern Hemisphere.
Humans lived on this planet when the ice came. They lived on this planet when the ice receded. And those humans did not have cars, central heating, nuclear power… cell phones, iPads, jobs in a cubicle… grocery stores, power companies, water suppliers, hospitals.
When catastrophe comes again, I don’t think many of us will survive. Some of us, I think, will.
Survival of the fittest—I wonder what “fittest” means.
What if it means how we dance during a full moon?