Not bad for a fat girl

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Stormy Nights


Here in the desert southwest we’re in the midst of monsoon season. Yes, that’s a real thing. The past three nights have brought huge storms with tremendous winds and rain.

Night one was the scariest. It started with a giant dust storm that swept through our area, whipping up leaves, debris, and dirt, and depositing a great deal of it into our swimming pool. The dust was following by a torrent of rain, and winds that just wouldn’t quit. Our metal shed couldn’t take the wind and slid around, banging into the adjacent wall. We didn’t realize that it was never secured in place. That will be remedied today.

Night one also did quite a bit of damage to trees in our area. Ours were spared, but our neighbor has two large limbs that are dangling precariously. I worry that the next storm might send them flying into my yard, or worse, into my home. Those limbs, however, are nothing compared to the giant limb that was ripped from one of the stately old trees in my school’s playground. Remarkably the district’s grounds crew had removed it by the next morning. I imagine they worked into the evening to clean up all the sites in our district. Kudos to them.

Night two had us a bit on edge, as we were concerned that it would be a repeat of night one, but in our area at least it wasn’t quite as bad. It didn’t bring the dust of night one, and the winds were slightly less fierce, based on the fact that the shed stayed in place during the storm. Unlike night one, that temperature barely dropped, making it uncomfortable to be outdoors.It was still quite a light show, with flashes and bolts of lightning entertaining us from a safe distance. My poor dog spent a second evening cowering in her kennel, convinced, I’m sure, that the world was ending.

Night three came in with a gentle rain that built steadily until it was a full fledged monsoon, complete with whipping winds and thunder and lightning. Again, there was less debris in the pool, mainly because most of it got dumped in there on night one. Again the shed stayed put, and again the dog cowered.

All three nights we watched the storm from our lounge chairs that we’d put under the patio cover, along with everything else that might blow away or get damaged. Nights one and three were nice and cool, relatively speaking, and I spent a good long time watching mother nature have her tantrums, but night two was hot and sticky and I retreated to the air conditioning after just a short time.

These storms are powerful and dangerous, but there’s no denying their beauty. As long as I’m safe at home and away from the lightning, I love a good monsoon. My poor dog can’t say the same.



Windshield Wipers and Love at Christmas

Windshield-Wipers-1It doesn’t rain much here, but when it does it often comes as a deluge. The usually hot dry climate is rough on items made from rubber, and they don’t last like they do in other areas. That’s especially true of windshield wiper blades.

Two days ago there was a huge cloud in the sky. Giant. It was one of those ominous looking ones, all grey and threatening. I received a text at work from my sweetheart asking what year my car was. Huh? I sent him the information and carried on. We had tickets to a holiday concert that evening, and I wanted to make sure I got home in plenty of time to get ready. He had gone in early that day and was already home. I soon forgot about his question and wrapped up my day.

When I arrived home he asked me if I wanted to go with him. It was about an hour before we were scheduled to leave for the concert. Go where? To get wipers of course. Oh. Sure. We hopped in the car, drove a short distance to the auto parts store, and were faced with a wall of wiper blades. The nifty little computer thingie there told us which ones were correct for my car, and we found them on the wall. Not the cheap ones, though. He wanted me to have the really good ones.

We normally go places in my car. His is a sweet little gas guzzling, more or less two seater, high milage sports car. Mine is a gas sipping (ok, maybe not, but way better than his) sedan with plenty of room in the back for my gangly teenager. He noticed the last time it rained that my wipers weren’t really doing their job very well. He saw rain on the horizon and wanted to fix the problem. He is a doer. He doesn’t talk things to death. He acts. It’s his love language.

Have you read The Five Love Languages ? It’s brilliant. I don’t know about any kind of scientific basis for it, but when you read it, it makes sense. When I was newly divorced and taking a hard look at myself and what kind of person I was, and what I was looking for in a future relationship, I found this book. Call it pop psychology or fluff or whatever you want, but I read it and took something away from it that helped me to understand some of the relationships that I have in my life, not just romantic ones either. It helped me to better understand the dynamic between me and my mother, for example. We don’t speak the same language, love or otherwise, but gaining a little insight certainly has helped me to communicate with her better.

Back to the wipers. He put them on the car, and off we went to the concert. Sure enough it started to rain. “Merry Christmas, baby,” he told me, “these are your stocking stuffer.” I do love this man, and I love how he takes care of me, but clearly he is not a “gifts” guy in the language of love! With each silent pass of the wipers I will hear, “Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas…” and know that I am loved.