Four days of rain and wind, and even a few fatalities; Risa does not remember Eastern weather being this exciting but apparently the new normal is as advertised. She has been cooking, eating, driving her mom to the grocery store, and cooking and eating, and the weather is her latest excuse for stumping around on her walks like an old elephant Carrying a walking stick, no less.
During a break in the weather, she attended a birthday party for a couple of old Marines and got to eat without being the one doing the cooking, as well as listen to harrowing tales of Korea and Vietnam. The canal was very still and pretty, but a bit too civilized; gators that try to colonize it are usually disposed of in the interests of the hundreds of small-breed dogs that live in the vicinity.
The neighborhood is very pretty, but there is a lot of wear around the edges. Many houses are no longer occupied; about half of these wear half-hearted "for sale" signs year after year, and the weeds become an issue as they can harbor enormous Eastern Diamondback rattlers. The snakes are beneficial; they live on pesky squirrels, rats and armadillos, but stepping on one can be problematical.
It's not an urban area, which is hard for Risa to realize as it's very high density for what she thinks of as rural. With practice, she has come to regard herself as immured in a wild area, peppered with rattlers, wild pigs, bears, and other interesting things, but also with a high population of of socially maladjusted young males. She's cultivating the old Marines for added security; to a man, they are what in former times were called gentlemen.