Mountain Musings with Uncle Mott
Four Strong Winds
The arrival of autumn heralds the arrival of the windy season in Southern California, especially in the San Bernardino Mountains, after it’s compressed by the Cajon Pass, causing big rigs to overturn on the 210 and I-15 freeways in Fontana and Ontario. Yes, it’s the infamous Santa Ana winds, Devil winds, if you will. They often cause tree limbs to snap throughout the mountaintop communities, sometimes igniting wildfires.
This scenario could easily be prevented if So Cal Edison would just bury their powerlines, like it’s required to do in so many Southern California communities. But, no, it costs too much, says Edison. Tell that to the folks in Paradise, after a fallen powerline sparked a firestorm that burned their town to the ground. PG&E paid billions for that little blooper and billions more for other Northern California communities that were destroyed by a fire that could have easily been prevented. By the way, PG&E went into bankruptcy following those episodes.
Needless to say, mountain residents must be especially careful with fire and diligent with their weed and brush clearance this time of the year when the wind blows like the Devil throughout our area…End of rant.
This month’s strong winds have generated a bountiful crop of autumn leaves, which have kept Uncle Mott occupied raking and bagging them and then taking them to the dump for the past several weeks. I assume this will continue until the first snow flies, which could occur any time now.
Four strong winds that blow lonely, seven seas that run high, all those things that don’t change, come what may. If the good times are all gone then I’m bound for movin’ on. I’ll look four you if I’m ever back this way. If I get there before the snow flies and if things are lookin’ good, you could meet me if I send you down the fare. But by then it would be winter, not too much for you to do, and those winds sure can blow cold way out there. (“Four Strong Winds – Ian & Sylvia – 1963 – Neil Young – 1978)
Back in the day, when I was growing up in the OC, my Pappy used to wake me up around eight o’clock on Saturday morning with “Up and at ‘em,” a carry-over from his days in Army during “The Great War” (WWI). Then, like the staff sergeant he had been, he’d order me to get outside and start raking up all the eucalyptus leaves scattered across our gravel driveway. But then a cold, chilly wind would blow them all over the place. By that time, I was wishing I could go where the chilly winds don’t blow.
I’m goin’ where them chilly winds don’t blow, gonna find a true love, that is where I want to go, out where them chilly winds don’t blow…Wish I was a headlight on a westbound train, I’d shine my light on cool Colorado range, out where them chilly winds don’t blow. (“Chilly Winds – John Stewart – 1993)
Keep it flyin’,