Traveling this past week has brought me to a friend's home in Tucson. Tucson has three temperatures: hot, really hot, and so hot you can't live outside for more than half a minute. The natives or the naturalized Tucsonians tell me that "It's a dry heat" - as though somehow that makes it different from turning on the oven to broil. That's a dry heat too.
Plants here have adapted to their environment by storing water. I have a new respect for plants. If you can't migrate, you've got to make the best of things. Adapt or die, I believe is the Darwinian turn of phrase for this. Anyhow, small lizards scurry about in the mornings and the evenings, cactus wrens sing joyfully - or else they're calling for rescue - and billowing clouds form in the late afternoons.
These clouds bring the monsoon rains, and these are some spectacular rains. Torrents of rain plummet from the clouds, pelting the ground with big, fat drops. Pancake rain, someone called it. I went outside to cool off and was thoroughly drenched in one nano-second. It was worth it. Once the rain stopped, the heat resumed and I evaporated dry within minutes.
All this brings me to the topic of chili peppers, and that's the topic for the next post. When even the peppers give off heat waves, you know nature is simmering.
More next time.