Thunderstorm over the Santa Catalina Mountains

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My hotel room here looks out over the Santa Catalina Mountains, a golf course, and some desert set-pieces that punctuate the artificial (and irresponisible) green.

Last night I watched as the heavens played out a magnificent thunderstorm--lightning as I have never seen it before, even though I live in the lightning capital of the world. Huge jagged bolts that tore apart the night sky and light up the mountains in glorious silhouette. Unimaginably beautiful--to see a saguaro highlighted against the sky. Beautiful.

This morning I walked around seeing what the desert had to offer for the waking person. Rabbits, lizards, and a few other fast-moving ground things. But most wonder of all--a cactus wren in its nest and an unidentified owl high in the tree. La Paloma (the name of the resort) certainly has a home here as well.

Please join me in giving great thanks for all that the Lord has shared with me on these two trips. They have been utlimately restorativeo--to the point where tomorrow or the next day I may be writing about the categorical imperative or the Discourse on Method. Yes, my brain has recovered, ever so little.

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Well, you're certainly there at the right time of year for thunderstorms, which are quite common in July and August. When I lived there 25 years ago, they used to refer to this as the "monsoon season", although when I last lived there 10 years ago they had taken to calling it the "rainy season", as the storms were much less frequent. Still, you could still get the occasional fabulous storm, which it sounds like what you enjoyed. I loved this time of the year, not only for the storms, but because of the way the air smelled afterward (I'm a sucker for creosote). Back in the late 70's and early 80's these storms were an almost daily occurrence at this time of year.

By the way, many of the streets in Tucson used to act as storm sewers, and sloped down to the middle (Alvarado was one of these). When the storms would hit, the middle of the streets would acts as artificial arroyos, and would be unusable for an hour or two. If you needed to drive down the street, you'd stick to the outer rims. Sometime in the last 15-20 years they installed real storm sewers, so you probably won't see this any more, but it was one of many things that added to the exotic nature of the town for a Midwest boy.



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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on July 19, 2005 8:29 AM.

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