December at Five O’Clock Somewhere
For some unknown reason, when we set off from Albuquerque this afternoon, WCMIK packed the laptop computer, even though there is already a computer up here. However, now I’m glad to have it.
As I type this, I am not in the office; rather, I’m sitting in a rocking chair in the den, in front of the fireplace, in which a fire is burning, creating a wonderfully warm glow. To my left is a cat tree, which this weekend lacks cats – we’re not up here long enough this weekend to make the journey worth it for the cats, especially as we had and have detours to make on the way up and down. But other than the lack of cats, this is quite a pleasant place to be sitting to type. I have on my sheepskin slippers, and my alpaca shawl, and I’m quite comfortable. The rest of the house is chilly, since the heat was turned down while we were away and it takes a while for the furnace to catch up. Outside, of course, things are even chillier. According to the thermometer at the front of the house, the temperature was in the low 20s when we got here, and the prediction for the overnight low is 5. There’s some snow and ice on the ground, especially in the shady places.
Laguna Vista, where Five O’Clock Somewhere is located, and Elephant Butte, where we do our sailing this time of year, exemplify the huge range of climates we have in New Mexico. Up here, we’re in the mountains, almost in Colorado – which is why when we had the place built, we built it to Colorado standards. In a good year, we get good snow; officially the annual average snowfall is about 90 inches. Meanwhile, down at the Butte, we can sail even during what, in much of the rest of the country, is the dead of winter. The lake is quiet, without the hordes of jet-skis, water skiers, power boaters, and turbo-charged bass fishermen that flock there in the summer. It’s often just us and the grebes, charming black-and-white diving birds that come down every year to escape the bitter winters in places like Montana and
During the summer, our boat, Syzygy, like the grebes, migrates north. When the
This time of year, it’s a different sort of quiet. Right now, it’s a silent waiting for the snows to begin in earnest. And when the snow does finally come, it creates its own quiet, muffling everything, shushing both the outer sounds of the world and the inner worries and nagging thoughts that get so much in the way of feeling truly peaceful.
So I sit by the fire, watching the flickering flames, thinking peaceful thoughts. WCMIK just brought me a fresh IPA, and all’s right with the world.