The plot of Janet Fitch's White Oleander relies heavily on the Santa Ana winds and captures what they are. I can even clearly remember the opening scenes of the movie version, Astrid's voice saying, "The Santa Ana’s blew in hot from the desert that fall. Only the Oleanders thrived. Maybe the wind was the reason my mother did what she did." Thinking of them makes me a little nostalgic for home.
So, to welcome in this Santa Ana season, a quote from White Oleander:
"The Santa Anas blew in hot from the desert, shriveling the last of the spring grass into whiskers of pale straw. Only the oleander thrived, their delicate poisonous blooms, their dagger green leaves. We could not sleep in the hot dry nights, my mother and I. I woke up at midnight to find her bed empty. I climbed to the roof and easily spotted her blond hair like a white flame in the light of the three-quarter moon."
"Down below us in the streets of Hollywood, sirens whined and sawed along my nerves. In the Santa Anas, eucalyptus tress burst into flames like candles, and oilfat chaparral hillsides went up in a rush, flushing starved coyotes and deer down onto Franklin Avenue."
I like seeing a little bit of my true locale making it into literature and films and music. Everything doesn't always have to be set in New York City.