Reentry To The Roasting Pacific Northwest

Paradise found is paradise lost

Farming changed in Hawaii, primarily due to invasive species such as the little-fire ant, borer beetles, and feral pigs.

That, and the transition from paradise to burning climate crisis hell.

Also, age crept into us like a beetle boring into a coffee bean. Even a tough, bitter, exterior can’t stop advancing years. We moved.

I was born in the best place on Earth, the Cascades.

Or, they were.

Today, it’s all fire, heat, extinction, drought, and no end in sight to the menacing blue sky. A little haze around Mt. Rainier this morning was promising, but the rising fireball of death we call “sun,” cleared them away like wisps of dreamy castles in the air.

Hot blooded

Now that the stakes for our new home are in the ground, I’m ready to pull them all up again and stab them into anyone I perceive as a blood-sucking vampire.

In my End-Times mood, that could be anyone: the parasites still shopping with plastic bags, science deniers, that guy stopped in traffic but still spewing toxic emissions, divisive, profitable news channels. That jerk who built his house in just three months and put in a lawn, Auntie or Uncle on social media. Myself. Anyone.

The first delay came with our builder’s unannounced retirement. Then COVID-19, then supply chain paralysis, then blazing temperatures.

Triple digit heat is the last charred straw that burnt the camel’s back.

Reentry into my beloved Pacific Northwest was based on the chill, refuge quality of this land. The ribbon-tied silver gifts of rivers, sparkling pearl-white peaks, expansive valleys of emerald sense and salad. The pre-Bezos cool of Seattle, the joy of June-uary, warm coffee on a cold August night, the excitement of seeing legs in shorts for a brief window of voyeurism we used to call “a summer day.”

I grew up with frozen, glittery winters, blowy, spritely green springs, the rare, sizzling summer day, and the bundling fall of shrouding every Halloween princess costume under rain gear and downy jackets. Braving the dark and cold to extort candy from neighbors was the real trick or treat.

An annual spring thrill unfolded when Tahoma (Mt. Rainier) in volcanic glory told Mt. St. Helen’s “My turn to glow, now, sister.”

Some say the world will end in fire

The sun we once worshipped has turned tyrant complete with stinging, lashings of red-hot sunbeams.

Obtaining air conditioning, once a waste of money for mere fools, requires we breach the burning asphalt. The concept of shades over windows tells us the shadow knows best.

There is smoke some days. Air quality has gone from crisp to chewy, to extra-crispy. No backyard campfires, no fireworks, no birthday candles. No one has the breath to blow them out.

Today, there is little snow on any peaks, no evading the heat. No escape from all the recriminations of those to whom we once could say “I told you so.”

More with steamy eyes, than with desiccated breath, they ask: “Why didn’t you tell us louder??”

Ecopsychologist, Writer, Farmer, Defender of reality, and Cat Castle Custodian.