Editorial: Remembering the monsoons of years past
As we wait for summer rains, I can't help but wish for some of those predictable, every-day, summer downpours, week in and week out through July and August.
First, the mornings would get hotter and hotter, and the humidity would become unbearable. We got stickier and crankier as we watched the clouds build up. And finally, aaaaah, the downpour would start, freshen everything up and bring blessed cool.
Does anything smell better than the first drops of rain hitting parched earth? And is anything more beautiful than the freshly washed landscape after a summer rain?
Used to be that we could set our clocks for the monsoons right about July 4. I remember Frontier Days rodeos performed in pouring rain.
My garden, as it is this year, would come along fairly well from spring through June, but when those rains came, well, the garden came alive! I enjoyed seeing the open land around our communities turn green, almost overnight.
When the monsoons cut loose, it wasn't just a few drops or a small storm here and there. Numerous "gully washers" would flood roads, fill the local lakes and creeks, and revive the landscape. After the rains came, a drive to Phoenix was a must, just to see the desert turn into miles of velvet green grass under the saguaros.
Central Arizona has been in a drought for so many years, I hardly can remember what it was like during those predictable summers. I just hope they return soon!
While we wait, many of our communities are experiencing severe water shortages. Stage 4 restrictions have been eased, but the communities of Spring Valley and Bensch Ranch still are under orders to conserve. Mayer and Poland Junction are in the same condition.
A few things to remember: water gardens and landscape at night or early in the morning to avoid evaporation, don't leave water running while brushing your teeth, cooking or other household activities, and be sure you fix leaky toilets and faucets!
Meanwhile, I think as soon as those first drops hit the ground, I'm going to go outside and stand in the RAIN!