Wednesday, April 30, 2008
So I was lying by this pool in Desert Hot Springs - this trip is increasingly inexplicable - and I decided that in precisely twenty minutes I would swim 50 lengths. After ten minutes a small group of young people came and stood - stood! - in the pool. One girl was eating - eating! - as she paddled aimlessly about. My eyes closed, I willed them to leave. One minute later I heard shrieks and splashing. I opened my eyes. A reddish snake about 2 feet in length was swimming across the pool. As the gilded - though zoologically ill-informed (the only poisonous snakes in the state are, I gather, all rattlers) - youth of California leapt from the pool, the snake slid elegantly up the steps and on to the lawn. The Y of C fled the scene as did almost everybody else. I looked up. The snake had now metamorphosed into a humming bird hovering over my head. I grinned, it dipped and plunged. Completing my 50 lengths, I rose dripping from the pool to be greeted by yet another incarnation of my spirit friend - a roadrunner. It stepped elegantly past me before accelerating into the bushes. The desert understands me.
Posted by Bryan Appleyard at 4:06 am