August 22, 2010

Weather to Play

Filed under: MiscellAnnia — Ann @ 7:53 am

I grew up on the shores of San Pablo Bay. That meant that, except for two predictable heat waves in late May and early September, every non-winter’s day was pretty much cool and windy. Winter brought mild rains. It was the perfect kid-climate. In my neighborhood, we ran around in shorts and sweaters, and our pink-cheeked healthfulness was not from a too-hot sun but, rather, from the brisk slaps of wind coming off the Bay. It was paradise, and it was the kind of climate that became, apparently, so entwined with memories of childhood that they all came tumbling back to me yesterday.

To my lucky-stars delight, we’ve had a relatively cool summer here in the San Francisco Bay Area. Coastal folks have bundled against the blustery chill, but we inland residents have reveled in postcard-perfect 75 degree days — as they say in Italian, non troppo freddo, non troppo caldo, e perfetto!; not too anything.

And some of those days have been even cooler — like yesterday. I was taking my afternoon walk and suddenly realized I was pretty much wearing the play-costume of my childhood — shorts and a hoodie. The sun was bright but the air was October-brisk and the wind was pinking my cheeks, tangling my air, and making me smile with the memories of a thousand childhood days climbing jungle gyms and calling “ollie ollie oxen free” (even when the Bay winds would sometimes blow those words impotently back into the caller’s face). As I walked, I realized, “This is my play weather.” I smiled to remember.

Global weirding — my phrase for changing weather patterns — has made that predictable climate a thing of the past, a thing of my childhood, along with dial phones, black-and-white television, and spoolies. But yesterday, for a brief moment, I remembered what it was like to be a Bay Area child, to run not just like the wind, but with the wind. It was glorious.


  1. Childhood? That was teenhood. The first fourteen 1/2 years were in Georgia, Jersey, and Mass. But, what the hell, it makes good reading.

    Comment by Richard — August 22, 2010 @ 8:05 am

  2. Whoops. Never mind. I thought I was responding to Neal’s blog. (Must be the painkillers.)

    Comment by Richard Attinson — August 22, 2010 @ 9:02 am

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