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Last summer brought an abundance of roses, so many I did not have enough vases to hold them all. And I only picked those hidden from view!

This year the roses are few and those poorly formed, although our watering and fertilizing and spraying have all been the same. But the baby quail, and deer, and turkey! We’ve never seen so many baby critters trailing through all our yards, hunkering under the bushes, and flying up into the treetops!

This week a heatwave has been forecast, with temperature over 100 for ten days straight and up to 112 degrees. Clear skies, zero precipitation.

But twice this week, instead of heat, we got warm rain. One time lasting all day, and today our house shook with thunder. The rain fell so hard and thick it looked like hail. And they say it never rains in California in the summertime!

A sign of the times, this unexpected mixture of drought and abundance. And not limited to nature. So much seems surreal.

Mailboxes ripped up and sorting machines thrown into dumpsters right before an election!

Walls of moms, and dads with leaf blowers, being tear-gassed by storm troopers!

The first Black woman chosen as VP on a major political ticket!

A diplomatic treaty signed between the UAE and Israel!

Open warfare between teachers and governors over whether to open schools or resort to distant learning again!

Hoards of unmasked worshipers swamping the beaches in Orange County, despite a pandemic that is killing hundreds of thousands of Americans!

What does it all mean? How will it all end?

We are lost within the grey fog of war.

Clearly we live in interesting times. A curse? Possibly. A cleansing? Hopefully.

No wonder we feel as if the rug has been pulled out from under our feet. And we haven’t quite landed yet.