02.09.16 It was seven degrees when I took this photo Friday in Sun Valley, and it dropped to below zero on our drive home. The twisty, windy road follows Idaho’s Salmon River, which was covered in ice floes and their blue shadows. Bright high-altitude sunshine made crisp edges of everything, and our eyes hurt when it leached through the sides of our sunglasses. But it was splendid! We talked about how we didn’t remember any sunlight during the month of January, and how energizing it felt to have warm sun fill the car. Winter, surely losing its grip, even as we watched the thermometer go negative.
When I sent Rita my photo of steam rising from the laundry at the Sun Valley Resort, she sent me a photo back of a yellow daffodil bud, poking up in a sidewalk crack, back at home. It’s going to be an emotional roller coaster, this month of February! Shall I stay in Winter, or skip ahead to Spring? Already, I am listening for the trill of the male Red-wing Blackbird’s imminent return, and with my head down, I search the ground for budding crocus and hyacinth. We have friends who left today for Mexico, and another pair who flew to Hawaii, jump-starting the new season. They will not have my dilemma when they return at the end of the month; they will be safe in hope of Spring.
We took a late afternoon walk at the north end of the lake yesterday. Just a few weeks left to go there before the the gate is locked to the refuge, in protection of nesting waterfowl. Don said he didn’t know whether to be happy or sad in the “balmy” 40 degree, calm day. The kitties and I went down to the lakebed when we returned, and they rolled around in the warm gravel, while I watched the most beautiful sunset of the new year. I could not bring myself to photograph it, as the contrast with my winter photo, was just too much for me to process right now.
I heard on the BBC report that Ireland and much of Wales are experiencing hurricane force winds and a bitter winter storm, and thousands without power. And, I was envious.