Well after a whirlwind three month period of activities ranging from a new home purchase to many overtime hours logged at work, things have finally begun to settle down around the house. We are still trying to get small projects accomplished before the blistering Southwest summer begins frying everything in sight from struggling vegetation to the skin on the backs of our necks! There is something oddly beautiful about the brutally intense heat of the desert. Watching the sun rise on a summer morning brings feelings of nervous anticipation as you enjoy the last remnants of cool air (if you can call 97F cool!) the night had to offer. All the while knowing that within two to three hours the intense blast of heat radiating down upon you will be sucking every ounce of energy from your body leaving you exhausted, dehydrated and parched. Yet there is something fascinating about carrying on with life (and we do!) in such trying conditions. It becomes a battle not necessarily for actual survival but a battle for comfort. Everybody carries some type of water bottle, almost everybody at stop signals hair is blowing because the AC vent in their car is pointed directly at their face, people will look for shady spots under trees to park their cars, in hopes that it won’t be as hot for them upon their return from the cool interiors of stores they just shopped in. It truly becomes a test to our mental states as the mercury levels begin to rise so do our levels of discomfort, it is especially evident in young children who really don’t understand why they feel cranky and pissed off! Right about when we think we have had enough of living in a blast furnace and we’ve been contemplating how nice relocating to Seattle might be one of my favorite aspects of Summer appears! MONSOON SEASON! I personally love it when we get drenched in a down pour because the temperature will drop dramatically for a while and the blasted dry landscape covered in dust from several months of intense heat will get washed down and everything begins to look a little brighter and not as dull. The creosote bush will dispense to our noses the earthy smell that I have loved since I was a kid and as if that smell were indication of a food source the desert comes alive with animals enjoying the high humidity and lower temperatures if only for a few hours. Some of the most amazing thunder and lightning I have ever seen occurs during monsoon season and as I enjoy this wondrous time I know that Fall is right around the corner with its warm (not hot) days and cool nights, and just after that the cool temps, crystal blue sunny skies will be here again to remind us why we didn’t take that leap and move to Seattle.