January 20, 2017 — North Central Florida

Today the weather was as divided as our nation — one moment, thick cloud cover and the next, dazzling sunshine and blue skies. All this meteorological confusion is continuing to confound the azaleas, and a few other flowering bushes and trees, that insist on behaving as though spring has graciously arrived early. Forecasts for next week predict much lower temperatures although nothing cold enough to threaten the foliage.

At noon, a friend and I dined al fresco in our shirtsleeves, enjoying the mild temperatures and a steady breeze that sent napkins airborne and left me with my first hay fever symptoms of the year. When we are fortunate to have weather moderate enough to allow us time outside of air-conditioned or heated buildings, we are blitzed by an onslaught of pollen.

The break for lunch with my friend was both unexpected and relaxing. I was moving dully this morning after a night of only three hours sleep, and that time out with good conversation gave me the jump-start I needed to finish my day. Unfortunately, the cause of my insomnia will be around for at least four years, so I imagine there will be many more nights of angst and bewilderment.