For the past few days the sky has been white, orange-white, instead of the usual blue, and the air has begun to smell of smoke from the fires up north and perhaps also the fires south-east of here. Tomorrow morning we have planned to drive east to the Sierras between Lake Tahoe and Yosemite, to visit an area my son has been talking about. But the air quality up there is very poor and it is unusually hot, so we may have to spend our time inside looking out at the creek. I'm packing books--not the worst thing in the world to do. Occasionally I think about getting caught in an inferno, but I tend to be an optimist, even about the weather, always finding it hard to believe that the weather wherever I'm going is any different from the weather here.

Two days in the Sierras, then off south to the desert east of Sierras down by Bishop where a friend is teaching at Deep Springs College for the summer. My husband wanted to teach there, a course over the summer of next year, and we're looking forward to seeing what it looks like, this very small, but notable college, where the students run the ranch and hire the professors.