When I was a child in SC, I knew the sun rose in the east, so when I looked in the direction of the rising sun I knew I was looking east, and when I looked east I knew I was looking in the direction that the sun came from. I knew also that the ocean was off there in the east too, but we never went there.
When we moved to California I knew the ocean, the Pacific, was in the west; from the top of a near by mountain I could see the ocean off there in the west. So I knew west was where the ocean was and that the ocean was in the west.
But then I moved to Santa Barbara, California and I have been screwed up ever since as to where east and west and north and south are exactly. Santa Barbara is located on a bit of land that juts out into the Pacific. You can see on a map that, if you are standing in Santa Barbara and you decided to face the ocean, you are not looking west, you are in fact looking south!
I don’t know how the hell the ocean stopped being in the west, but it did and ever since then I have been screwed up. Since I continue to think the ocean is in the west, I am also confused as to where north and south are exactly. I got so confused and upset by my confusion that Carol bought me a little compass to carry around if I became upset about not knowing which direction I might be looking. That was a good idea. But I lost the compass.
I have been thinking about directions because I hear on the radio that the Big Fire is moving north east. So when I turn around and the ocean is at my back and I am looking at the mountains—and I don’t know how this happens—I am actually looking north. It is good to know the fire is moving north because that means it is not moving south which is where I am located.
Maybe because of the fire, I will finally figure out which direction the ocean is, here in Santa Barbara.
In the meantime, I don’t think I will look up at the sky again this month because I am sick and tired of that cloud of smoke.