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Weather Jinx

I feel so sorry for all the people who don’t know that they can drive an old mail man van and sleep in it anywhere they want. Because those people always sleep in their stuck houses, they get stuck too. Mom and I know that we don’t need many things or much space, so we can be busy-ness people in The City on Friday, and still wake up in the desert on Saturday. After work we drove right past our stuck house, and instead of watching a couple of hours of Netflix, we sat in the Covered Wagon and listened to a story while we watched the night go by until bed time. When we woke up, we were in the desert.

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jigsaw puzzles, but to the left it was grey and angry looking, like the sky was bruised and swollen from a fight and was looking to get revenge. I sure hoped that our last turn would be to the right, but then Mom turned to the left and drove into the distressed sky until we were right in the middle of it.

Rain is a funny thing. Sometimes the rain hits the windows like a storm, but when open the door and stand in it, most of the drops you. That’s the kind of rain that was happening as we hiked into the desert. Maybe it was just the fashionable rain coat that Mom made me wear that scared away the rain drops, but even though there was rain for our whole hike, it mostly left us alone.


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good for walking across, but not good for marking an obvious trail, so I sprinted here, there and everywhere, barking into the clouds while Mom and The Witch that Lives in her Phone navigated. I guess I should have been paying closer attention, because soon a long fence made out of a wire tied to posts blocked our path. “What do we do now?” I asked. “Well, the sign says ‘Foot traffic only.’ I think that means we’re allowed on the other side…” Mom said, scratching her head. “But how?” “Where’s the door?” I asked. We looked right and left along the fence, but it went on and on forever into the desert without a break. Mom looked flummoxed, so I had to take control of the situation. “I know what to do!” I said. Then I ducked my head and walked under the wire. Like magic, I was on the other side. I could almost see smoke coming out of Mom’s ears at the magic trick I had just done. Humans are so dumb, they think that a fence is the same as a wall and they never even try to go through. Luckily Mom was having a brave day and she went through the wires herself. Her packpack was feeling a little less brave and tried to prevent her from trying something new, but after a few tries, she made it to the other side too.

We hiked in another dry river bed, but this one was much nicer than the last dry river we went to because it had no Oscarfalls, just lots of sand and the mess left behind by the fight between the moon and Mars. Everywhere there were rocks that were all the colors of grey: jade-grey, red-grey, pink-grey, yellow-grey…  In the parts of this desert that the moon had won there were drip piles of grey-green cheese covered in matcha dust that dribbled down the cliffs, and slimy bits of cheese curds on the ground in places where the rocks were rotting. In the Mars parts of the desert, the rocks were the color of car accident bruises and the cliffs had big holes in them like they’d been blown up, and the blown-up rocks were flung all over the ground like blood and guts. The moon parts were mostly up-and-down lines like stalagmites, and the Mars lines mostly went side-to-side in stacks, but here and there the moon balanced a stack on top of its drips, or Mars tried dripping down a tall stack. That’s called compromise.

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obstaples like fences, and battle grounds, and trick mud, and Colin Firth that slowed us down. We had been hiking for more than 7 miles and the rain had eased its way through my rain jacket. Mom’s front paws were so cold that sometimes The Witch didn’t recognize her as a living thing when she poked to ask for directions. So we decided to stay on the main Jeep trail and skedaddle back to the Covered Wagon. I wished very much that Mom could run so that we could get to the Covered Wagon faster, but instead I bounded around in the brush beside the trail and tried to dig to China to keep myself warm.

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Oscar the Explorer



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