Until this year Colorado Springs has had four seasons: winter, spring, geranium eating season, and fall. Geranium eating season begins when I find that the little geranium plants I’ve babied for several weeks are chewed down to the roots. For the sudden disappearance of my plants, I can thank the neighborhood deer.
Being the not too bright person that I am, I start over with the geraniums and, of course, the deer show up for dessert. I know this was their space before people arrived to lay claim, so I try to be forgiving. Being forgiving seems a good option when compared to the nasty smelling rotten egg spray that will keep deer away. Smart deer! Hang out someplace else for a few days and let those human types deal with the odor they created.
This year we have a new season to replace spring. It’s smoke season. What a surprise to wake up one morning and find ourselves looking through a gray haze at outlines of the mountains. Who could have dreamed that Arizona would so generously share the smoke from their wildfires with us way out here on the opposite side of the Rocky Mountains?
Tourists expecting to enjoy the beautiful mountains, our major claim to fame, are scratching their heads and trying to decide what we think is so wonderful. Some residents are also starting to question the wonderful part. Burning eyes and the odor of wood smoke are constant annoyances. Our city now seems to be in non-compliance with all environmental guidelines.
A continuing smoke advisory cautions individuals with heart disease, respiratory illnesses, the very young and the elderly to limit prolonged exertion and to stay inside when the smoke thickens. My house would not be a good choice for an inside stay. The haze didn’t limit itself to the mountains, but also created a layer of grime on all of the surfaces in my home. (Hey, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it. At last, an excuse!)