Snowy Summer Sales

*by Eduard Ebel (1839-1905) ‘softly falling snowflakes’

Und leise rieselt der Schnee* … No. Not really. But it feels like it. It’s cold and wet. Rain instead of snow, softly drizzling for three days now, with intermittent stronger showers, a little thunder here and there, a smidgen of hail or even frozen patches causing vehicular mayhem on the interstate. All of us trapped beneath the dome of the steel gray firmament. 


Remembering last year’s devastating drought so vividly in rich tones of brown earth, grey smears of ashes, choking caliche plumes and hot fire engine red flames, no-one here in Central Texas would dare to actually complain about rain. However, it’s difficult not to whisper below one’s breath a secrete longing for the warmth of Atenas, Costa Rica. 


There, Summer reigns, as we endure Winter rains here.


Indeed, Costa Rica, though roughly 880 miles north of the equator aligns itself with the Southern Hemisphere in all things seasonal. The other day, I saw this ad in ‘The Tico Times’, a popular English language Costarricense publication http://www.ticotimes.net/ 

Summer sale promotions are in full swing, now that all school age children have, more or less reluctantly, returned to their institutions of learning after their two months Summer vacation from roughly mid December to mid February. Parents have time to shop! Stores like ‘Constru Plaza’ and ‘EPA’, the equivalents of ‘Lowe’s’ and ‘Home Depot’ in the US, are especially busy during these dry Summer months, the perfect time to pour concrete, lay roof shingles and install new windows. 


Meanwhile here in Texas the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services have sent me another little note. I am being instructed, which original documents to bring with me to San Antonio, when I’m called in for my civics test and interview, the hopefully next to last step toward citizenship – the last one being the Naturalization Ceremony or the ‘Swearing In’ itself. In this note it states: “… USCIS has performed a complete review of your file and Application for Naturalization …”. Has performed. I take that as an encouraging sign and picture my narrow bundle of paperwork happily hopping forward to queue for an interview. May the line be short! 


And as I write this, the cloud cover lifts and the last lingering pockets of mist are rapidly evaporating. Soon the sun will be strong enough to dry the days old dampness from the animal’s fur and mom and fawn will be able to graze in comfort.  
   

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