Saturday, December 27, 2008

Mill Avenue Nights Friday, December 26th 2008


Nothing else can really be said for the night. The temperature has dropped precipitously since the solstice; plummeting down to the low 40s. Anything hovering around and below the 50s is weather that makes my nose run. I hate that. I don’t know what was up with the dew point, however, since we couldn’t see our breath yet—which is something we had going on a few weeks earlier with less bone-chilling cold.

There are just particular types of cold. There’s the cold I recall from Minnesota. It drove me forward, stomping through the snowy forests; recalling a witerbite through my boots and into my feet, but nothing that reached down into my bones the way that Sonoran cold does.

Mill Ave was largely depopulated of the ordinary night-clad folk visiting clubs and bars, but they were certainly still there. They just didn’t choose to stop and dawdle in the chill so much. Possibly because a number of people were out in short sleeves, swinging their arms in the frigid air. Walking off of the Ave, the wind would pick up between the aisles of buildings. My cheeks felt cold from the bristling breezes.

All I did much on the Ave was talk to some of the streetrats and enjoin in a few gatherings outside of Valley Art theater; but there was little to discuss. Most of them have been huddling back at their squats or hiding in what housing they’ve been able to find during these colder days.

It’s particularly difficult for the itinerant culture during the winter. Fortune, of course, favors those out here due to the fact that we’re at a low altitude and latitude. The desert can reach freezing at nights, though, so anyone sleeping outside is at something of a risk. I still recall some of my nights sleeping out near the Mill Ave bridge. Cold causing all of us to shiver even as we were huddled together, listening to every passing car, and flicker of lights thinking it might be the police.

At least jail would be warmer.

Strange for me, of course, since unlike many of my friends I did have a place that I could go to if I chose to—and I did, often taking some of them with me. The number of street rats who I kept in my dorm room later that year was a little amusing. Possibly less-so to my patient and kind roommate at the time. Who managed to suffer well through the sick kids that I let sleep in my bed while they were taking their medication and recovering.

Healers. Can’t go far without us fostering some ailing stray under our wings.

That was a great deal of time before.

Now the chill simply hurts my fingers and makes it hard to type.

I hope everyone else had a warm Yule. Be well out there everyone.

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