Once upon a golden age, with a fountain pen and a bound book of blank pages I recorded my thoughts on this chair, facing the water, in a place not yet invaded by weeds. I wrote lyrical stories, of a life charmed with blessings, uncoiling the sense of wonder found in this paradise.
But Paradise is based on a delicate balance of forces. Winds and water levels, beavers and the condition of a strong Pacific storm dissipated my faith in this paradise within hours.
During the night, the lake outflow over spilled into the ocean, large waves contaminated the fresh water lake, and soon, within days, the fish began to die, and beavers and fowls moved on.
Paradise's history changed for ever. People who had moved to this town, and this lake for fishing and recreation pulled stakes and left. Restaurants closed. Businesses dried up. Real estate offices shut their doors. Schools consolidated and laid off personnel.
One act of nature had changed the face of this town.
Of course, history books will not connect all these events to that night. They will explain the loss of businesses on the recession; the consolidation of schools on the loss of timber money; the shutting down of real estate offices to the housing bubble. The city had lost its sewer system on such a storm, and to replace it, they tacked a hefty tax on the remaining citizens.
The year and month, Dec. 4 2007. Newspapers noted that a big storm downed the power grid and the highway was closed for a couple of days. Yes, those happened too.