Waggs Walkabout

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Rain in the Desert

A recent post mentioned that our little piece of the desert received less than 4 inches of rain in 2009 and that we’d had more than that in January of 2010. It’s now mid-March and we’ve had over 14 inches of rain. The Todd River has flowed for weeks, the desert has turned green and the bare spots in my lawn have filled in dramatically. We had 2 straight weeks of clouds and rain.

Those are all good things and we have to remember the old adage that "we have to take the bad with the good". Here are few things I’ve learned about rain in the desert:

Flat roofs are bad when you get 3 inches of rain in an hour. (Fortunately - the room under the flat roof is a bathroom with a tile floor and a floor drain.)

Mosquitoes can mysteriously appear after a BIG rain even they weren’t here before the rain.

Houses made out of cinder blocks (with exposed block for the exterior walls) smell like wet cement after a week of rain.

There’s nothing that can be done about the afore mentioned odor other than pray for sunshine.

People who live in a place that gets over 320 days of sunshine a year get grumpy when the sun doesn’t show its bright shiny face for 10 days.

In a town where only about 30% of the households own a clothes dryer, there was a waiting line at the Laundromat last week of people wanting to use a dryer. (320 days of sun shine = everyone has a clothes line)

People who live in a place that gets over 320 days of sunshine a year often refuse to leave their homes when it’s raining – I kid you not! Of course, they may have been staying home to ration their dry clothes???

The monsoon cleared out late last week and we’ve had glorious weather since then. Today the high was 82 with 37% humidity and a light breeze. Don’t be too jealousy, that’s our payoff for the two times this summer it hit 120.

Alice Springs is close enough to the equator that there is less than 2 hours difference between our longest and shortest days. We range from 8.4 hours of sun in June to 10 hours of sun in December. Another reason so few people has clothes dryers.

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