Friday, July 20, 2007

Water Where Art Thou?

Can you tell what these are?

They're storm clouds. Not something you see everyday
in Phoenix. It actually rained here this week -- twice!

Summer in Phoenix means it's time for monsoon season.
That sounds so much more fantastic than it is. Monsoons
are our summer rains that begin with wind and dust storms
and then end with a good, heavy downpour. The winds
really do get pretty active though. Our friend Johnny was
telling us a trampoline blew out of their yard during a
monsoon last year, and it completely disappeared! They
have no idea where it went. You also have to make sure
certain trees (like our Chilean Mesquite) get a regular,
long, slow watering so the roots grow deep into the
ground. Otherwise, they'll just get ripped up and blow
away in the wind.

The dust is the part that amazes me. We certainly
have no shortage of it here in the desert. So, when
the wind blows, it kicks up tons of dust, which
covers everything with a pretty solid layer and
adds pollutants to our already-smoggy Phoenix
air. It can also be a driving hazard if it kicks up
enough to block the view, or so I've been told.
But these storms really do make for a good show.
(Ahh, there's the silver lining I was looking for.)
I guess the moral of the story is its nice to watch
monsoons unfold from the safety of your own
kitchen, but if you're going to go outside in one,
then buckle up and wear a helmet to protect
yourself from flying trees and trampolines.
You heard it here.

So, the season officially kicked off on Tuesday.
David got the yard back in order on Wednesday
evening, just in time for another storm to roll
in last night. No complaints though -- It's been
dry here since April (that's the last time David
and I could remember it raining, anyway). That's
better than last year. While we were in Ireland,
Phoenix went a record 143 days without the wet
stuff. Record or not, we were ready for some rain!
It's good for the crops, plants, grass, animals, wildfires --
and selfishly, I'm excited that with enough rain, the
campfire restrictions will be lifted so we can go
camping again.

The scary thing is that this prolonged trend of no
rain and high temperatures is not new and not
going anywhere. Yet, people (including us) continue
to move to the desert in droves. Of course, we all
use water to maintain our daily lives, yards and pools,
and for now we're able to get the water we want, but
we don't have a huge local source of water. At some
point, the nice people of Colorado are going to tell us
to back off their precious resources. I've read multiple
reports that say its very likely the southwest will
experience another dust bowl by 2070. I am
starting to feel quite guilty inside knowing that we're
part of the contributing crowd that is mindlessly
consuming without any worry about what that means
for this state and its future. Is it alright to sit back,
pour a glass of water, and hope someone, somewhere
makes some headway on a solution? I guess we can
just enjoy monsoon season for now.

1 comment:

Lindsay Teague said...

I believe SOMEONE should be reading and not BLOGGING, hmmm? :) Hope it went well today and you're able to take a little breath! Love you girl!