Thursday, December 27, 2007


I woke up early this morning with a sensation that can best be described as wearing a crown of icicles. Okay, that's not so unusual. It does get cold at night here. But the iciness continued from the top of my head all the way down to my toes - and this is a sign that something is not right. My bestest buddy throughout the winter months is my heated mattress pad. It ensures that no matter how freakin' cold it gets, as the wind whistles past my bed, as long as I stay under the covers - I am warm and okay. But this morning - I shivered and shook beneath the blankets - something was not right.

My first assumption, based on the high winds that whipped up the night before, was that we had a power outage in my area of town. This is not uncommon here, and generally gets handled fairly quickly. But a quick glance at my neighbor's houses made it obvious that the problem was mine, and mine alone. So in the wee hours of the a.m. I staggered outside to the electrical panel (modeling my fetching new Christmas pajamas) and spent several fruitless minutes flipping breakers and cursing.

Despite my best efforts and willingness to become a plaid flannel popsicle, it required a visit from our local utility company to get the juice back on, and it took a few hours after that to get the my frozen blood flowing again.

Okay - so maybe this a payback for the warm sunny days I had earlier this week. But I suspect that people living in the midwest, Canada, and other areas think that life in Southern California is always warm and sunny, even in winter. I'll admit that the mercury seldom drops as far here, and it certainly doesn't snow, but it's actually relative.

When I lived on the mainland (even in sunny SoCal!) we had this thing, ohhh what's the word.....oh yeah....HEAT! Even the cruddiest little studio I ever rented (in an even cruddier neighborhood) had a small gas heater on the wall in the main room, and most also had those little electric coil heaters in the bathroom.

There's also this other nifty invention - insulation. (No, not that kind. Being a stick person, I haven't got any of that.) As in the stuff inside your walls that keeps the cold out and the warm in during winter, and the opposite during summer. But my house, along with many of the other old properties in town, was only built to be a vacation home with lots of windows to throw open during the summer months and thin, insubstantial walls. (Think I'm kidding? If I'm not careful I can pound in a nail and the point will show outside!) It really wasn't built for year 'round occupancy. So the cold outside is not far off from the cold inside.

And is there a point to my rambling on about this? Other than my apparent need to vent about my craptastic morning? No, not really. I admit I live in a corner of the world that other people envy. And when things that are specific to this place crop up and make life less than comfortable, we often use the phrase, "price you pay for living in paradise". On good days we even mean it! But I often wish that the people who vacation here, had just a little better understanding of the place they are visiting, and the people who call it home.

1 comment:

Mia said...

I'm cold just reading that.. but I have an excuse cuz we have snow here!