Dragon season

The temperature yesterday 101F (38C), but it only felt like 95F, with 2% humidity and a dewpoint of 1F (-17C). That’s a hundred (or fifty-five) degree spread between temperature and dewpoint.

The chance of rain is 0%. No water falling from these skies any time soon.

The dry, dry air is bad for our water tables and bad for the wildfires burning in the Southwest, yet in its way good for my soul. I love these hot, dry days, the warm wind against my arms, the lightness of the air, the easy breathing of an atmosphere without moisture. This dry heat feels good, cleansing, an anticipated part of my year. My head feels clear. The mountains look sharp.

If we’re lucky, it won’t last. This is one of those years where I need to be hoping for an early monsoon, because monsoon rains put out fires, feed the soil, give us moisture desert flora and fauna needs to make it through the months between late summer and winter, for all that much of what lives here knows how to endure the harsher years. Humans are not, ultimately, among those who endure such years well.

In a few weeks, if they come and come on schedule, the monsoons will be glorious, which their release of energy, lightning flashing restlessly over the mountains, bolts splitting the sky; with the anticipatory wet-dust petrichor scent of damp creosote, te first fat raindrops that dapple the hot pavement, and the hard, fast fall of rain that creates rivers out of our streets and is a release of its own.

But with monsoon season the daytime air also grows oppressive with its more humid heat, and the lightness leaves the air, and cabin fever sets in, and it becomes far too easy to hate everything and everyone.

So I’ll wish for rain–of course I’ll wish for rain, because this is the desert and this is what the desert needs–but while I’m wishing, I’ll enjoy these hot clear dragon days, too.

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