Three of four of my geriatric citrus survived the Deep Freeze. The pink grapefruit tree in front is quite dead. I’m sad about it, but like wooden buildings on a hurricane-prone sea-shore, its location was not sustainable and it should not be replaced. If Tucson ever was a place that didn’t deeply freeze, it isn’t anymore.
Happily it’s lovely warm this week (high of 81 projected for today, a 54 degree improvement from St. Louis.) Never have I managed such an effective weather bail-out as I did this week. I got the usual annual comment “please stop complaining about how cold it is” and I point out that a) this isn’t the Everything Is Awesome All Of The Time Blog and b) I am not just complaining, I am STRATEGIZING. I’m just now getting back my full range of motion after being stuck in bitter cold for two weeks. I’m not eager to give it up again.
I was impressed with the way the honeysuckle vines soldiered through the freeze. Only the Cape Honeysuckle froze; clearly an unfit contender. The other three longleaf varieties (whose tags naturally I cannot find now to tell you about) did incredibly well, losing very few leaves. Also unfazed was the star jasmine, a new addition to the yard this year. And the creeping fig, my hero, 100% green and not a single leaf lost.
This morning, my lovely plumbers come back to hack into my walls and change out the elderplumbing in both showers. I’m having a lot of guests staying at the house this Gem Show and the shower that was rigged with a shutoff valve (a noble solution that served well for years to cope with an unfixable drip in the 1950s faucet hardware) developed yet more troubles and it took the addition of a wrench to turn it on. The other shower has to be shut on and off in the wall, also due to unfixable drip issues. So… not a cheap fix, replacing the ancient fixtures with well-made new ones (and have you tried to find well-made plumbing fixtures lately? What a world of crap it is out there.) But I did find them (Fergusons online, Kohler Triton) and there will be no more long explanations to guests about how to use the showers.
This was an expensive freeze in general- a tree to take out, a water line to fix, a hose bib to replace. But each time it happens, I learn a little more about how to be sustainable in the future.
I left the power cord to my MacBook in St. Louis, an odd thing for me to do, and it won’t arrive until later today. Once again I am reminded of how much I rely on it. I feel incomplete, and unable to communicate my heart. But I will say that I am surprised and discouraged to discover how unsettled I am, how much is swirling around below the surface of my mind. I have to admit, a lot happened in this past year, and not all of it was awesome. There was nothing to do about most of it but work, and work I did, like a goddamned trooper, but everything I pushed down for later is asking again, and in combination with the usual low of finishing a huge project, well… I find myself in some distress.
I am glad that letters have begun arriving from Bria, who is, as predicted, enjoying Navy Boot Camp. She was given command of her division, and her last letter was about learning to use the formal sword that she’ll wear with her whites. It’s a great image. I doubt she’ll see much sword action, going in as a geek, but hey. There is nothing wrong with sword training. The boys, while not remotely interested in military careers (thank God) are enchanted by the concept of the formal sword.
It’s funny, or sad, which things out of all things are causing me grief right now. Some of them, you’d think I’d be used to by now.