San Diego had many charms, but I don’t miss the palm trees. I’m loving being back in a place where trees lose their leaves and I get to look at these beautiful bare branches up against that pale winter sky.
Modesto is in the heart of the breadbasket of California, where everything grows so beautifully, and each town has their agricultural specialty. For Modesto it’s nuts. Our minor league baseball team is even named the Nuts. It’s a major point of local pride.
The nut trees in winter are such glorious grizzled things of unconventional beauty. They’re so gnarled and twisted they look like ancient cowboys marked by life on the plains.
These trees are just the ones that live at the end of my neighborhood and aren’t anything special, but even these ordinary ones look beautiful when they’re bare and stripped down. And they’ll be beautiful again in a few weeks when they break out in buds.