Somewhere I remember reading about a “rosy dawn,” but today’s rosy dawn is because of the fires burning in the San Gabriel area in Southern California. Yesterday as I drove home from Ventura, the billows of smoke from more than 80 miles away could be seen piling up in the sky, much like a volcano’s ash and smoke as it travels upward. This morning, the air is thick, and ash is falling on the streets in very fine particles.
The entire state of California is very vulnerable to these fires, which are part of the eco-system, and the fact that we have had a drought for several years, makes massive fires a very likely probability.
Where we live, we are in a valley surrounded by mountains. So far, we have not had anything major since moving here nearly five years ago, but I wouldn’t be surprised if our time will be soon. So many things can cause a fire, from a spark from electrical equipment to a bird on fire after hitting a power line (yes, it has happened), that you just don’t know where it will occur. You just need to be ready. Fires and earthquakes – a fact of life in California.
This week, our very good friend, Jerry, and his wife, Raka, have been here from Japan. They were married a year ago, and only now is their wedding reception being celebrated by their friends and family in the U.S. And, their first child is on the way! It is so good to see them, and wonderful to have the time to visit. They return to Japan tomorrow.
For me, the end of my all-too-brief summer holiday is winding to a close. I’ve had a few weeks off from students and school, but I still have had to deal with them even though I have tried to keep it to a minimum. We all begin again on 1 September.
I am also becoming a student again. Now that I have finished my teaching credential, the brain finally has time to pick up Japanese once again. I’ve tried different routes, but nothing seems to have been successful. I tried a community college class two nights a week while working on my credential. Too much work on all levels. Another time I tried a language class offered through a local adult school, but did not learn anything. Now I am trying to do it once more, this time through the Oxnard Japanese Language School. As the course meets state high school language standards, I expect it will be much be more to my liking. My class is for beginning adults; there are five adults, and seven kids, the youngest of whom is thirteen. Once we all settle in, I think it is going to be a lot of fun.
Finally, I’ve written down a very windy “how to” for making your own beret. Take a look at it. The purpose of this “Basic Beret” pattern is to help out the beginning knitter trying to design a hat. You can find the file on Ravelry, or here on the Pattern page, or under the heading of “Matataki Designs” to the right.