Wednesday, June 03, 2009

What Is So Rare As A Day In June?

(with apologies to poet James Russell Lowell)

In the High Desert, a day like this in June is especially rare. While people in other parts of the world look forward to the summer sun, I hug on to cloudy days like this with all my might.

See, we desert denizens know what's comin'. Summer is ruthless here, and it's long. We continue to get some blasting hot days through October, although cool breezes come by and kiss us more often by then.

Rain is even more rare than clouds, but when we get it, it can be pretty dramatic. Like the thunderstorm that hit this afternoon, about twenty minutes after I shot these pictures. (How's that for timing?) We had some huge thunder cracks, about thirty seconds of hale, then some great big drops of rain. Toward the end, it was raining through bright sunshine.

Earlier today, I went for a walk with my husband and discovered this peculiar tree. What the heck is it? A gold star to anyone who can tell me! (For a closer look, just click on the photos.) The fronds look like something from the willow family. The buds of the yellow flowers look like little green peas before they open. And by the way, they smell great.

Whatever the tree is, I doubt very much it's from around here. It's funny how much we've tried to adapt the desert to ourselves, instead of the other way around. (Except for central air. That's a MUST.) But then, I don't think most of us actually planned to live in the Mojave Desert.

I suppose, like my mystery tree, we all find a way to bloom where we're planted!


Jennifer Shirk said...

That IS a cool tree.

Love your analogy, too. :)

Anne McAllister said...

It's beautiful, Sierra, but I must admit that I enjoy the desert the most when I can see it without the heat so your pictures are my best bet!

Stephanie Newton said...

Love your pictures! It's beautiful!


CurtissAnn said...

What spectacular photos! I have to say that after all the years in OK, for these first months in AL, I get a real kick out of so many clouds that periodically shade the day. Not tired of the torrents of rain here yet. :)

You live in a majestic spot.