All night long I could hear my wind chimes
pealing wildly outside the window, the unmistakable sign that Santa Ana
winds have returned. It's very bright today (the winds scrub all the
pollution from the sky.) Sometimes the winds slow to a steady 15 mph
'lull', then without warning they'll leap to 40+ mph gusts, howling around the edges of the house and sending trees bending and
swaying wildly. What little actual soil sits on our sandy ground will be
scoured away, the shade garden will appear unusually bright due to leaves
that have been blasted off the trees, and the soft, fragile leaves of the
angel's trumpet will hang limp and shredded in the breath between gusts.
Later, in the afternoon when the winds will have died down (at least
temporarily), huge drifts of pine needles will have built up along the
west side of tree-shaded Arneill Road. Out in the vegetable fields south
of town, tumbleweeds will cling to west-facing fences.
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