Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Emptying Out the Town

JannyLou and Fast Eddie drove out just now. There's a trailer and a rooftop carrier and the suv is filled to the window ledges with plastic containers and ice chests and clothes and entertainment enough for the summer.

The houses bordering the golf course have their security shutters firmly clasped and the heavy padlocks discreetly hidden behind the flowering plants.  Those garage doors won't open again until Thanksgiving. 

Though Princess Myrtle is freezing in her first San Francisco summer, Tucsonans are quietly melting in place.  Those who know what's good for them are heading out of town.  The roads are empty; traffic signals have been readjusted over the past few weeks to reflect the absence of kid-transport.  At 4pm it is now possible to drive the thirteen minutes from Amster's house to my house without being stopped by a single red light.  Adhering to the speed limit has never felt so good. 

The pool was too hot by 9:30; I don't enjoy sweating while swimming laps.  The sun was baking the upward facing side, and I could feel the sunscreen surrendering.  I pruned the containers in the shade, but those pesky climbing weeds covering the heavenly bamboo will have to wait until I remember to go outside before breakfast, when the sun has not gotten over the roof.

Taking in the trash cans is an adventure.  The handles are burning, the lid nearly soft enough to be bendable, and the snakes are out on the ground cover, watching my bare toes in flip flops.  I'm not used to planning before doing that particular chore; it's only an issue for these four months.

Summer camps are traipsing across the UofA campus; teenagers in ever lengthening, straggling lines; little kids in matching neon t-shirts; busloads from Sonora.  How they manage to smile is beyond me.  The air conditioning is powerless if the car isn't parked in the shade.  I sweat behind the steering wheel as they walk by.

Walking with Brenda Starr is an indoor activity these days.  Hiking, were I able to join my friends, starts at 7am, 3,000 feet above my house, on Mt. Lemmon.  Ten degrees per one thousand feet is the rule of thumb; 85 down here is in the high 50's at the trailhead.  I cannot imagine ever needing a jacket again, as I watch the lizards doing pushups in the garden.

Then, I remembered taking G'ma for a picnic on just such a day.  She refused to consider bringing a sweater, but was quite glad to take advantage of the stash in my trunk.  She wondered why she was so underdressed, and I didn't have the heart to tell her that she'd soon be returning to triple digit temperatures, returning to air that felt as if it were melting her thinning skin.  And for right now, that's exactly where I want to be.


  1. We are already having high heat too. Although, I'm looking out the window right now and it looks like it might start raining. Love thunderstorms. Love them so much I listen to them and rain to go to sleep at night. I was going to suggest that you go to Chicago for a visit to Little Cuter, but it might be just as hot there. I guess there's no escaping the heat. :(

    Stay cool (physically and figuratively).

    Megan xxx

  2. You can appreciate why Hubby and I married (25 years ago on June 17th - Yikes!) in Lemmon Meadow at the tippy top of Mount Lemmon in the Santa Catalina Mountains. It was 119 here in Tucson. On the mountain it was in the 80s.


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