When the Fog is on the Rose

Outside the Office Window, December 31, 2015.

Outside the Office Window, December 31, 2015.

The roses are freeze-dried, caught by last week’s bitter cold in the last gasp of blooming. The hoar-frost from ice-fog touched them with ermine fur. The trees present a better example, turned from brown to shimmering white.

The Panhandle is so windy that we rarely get hoar-frost. On the other hand, as I learned when I was flying full-time, Amarillo in particular has two kinds of weather – great and grounded. There is no “marginal IFR” or “eh, grungy but workable.” Nope, it’s either clear and a million or the geese are standing beside I-27 holding up a wing feather and wearing little signs saying “South.”

So I was not surprised when the forecast for ice fog on the 28th busted and we were clear. The non-fog drifted away by eight AM and the sun shone all day. On the other gripping hand, we had such thick fog and low cloud on the 30th-31st that I heard 0 planes going over – no jets, no Southwest, no “what the heck, it can’t be that bad” prop planes. And yes, the geese were walking. White ice-fuzz coated every non-moving object left out overnight, including the roses.