So, that was summer, then…

Posted on August 23, 2010. Filed under: Culture, Health, Music, Musings, Travel |

This is what summer looks like from where I sit. Autumn looks a bit like that, too. In late Autumn and Spring there are also incredible wildflowers—then the desert looks a bit like the poppy fields in The Wizard of Oz.

The official “summer over” signal for me is the start of the autumn semester at the University of Arizona. The students are back. The staff is back. Everything kicks into high gear. July, being “the most popular month to leave Tucson” is very slow and sleepy and hot. It’s probably a bit like living in a summer resort town in the winter (except for the temperature!)  Although the Tucson area is not a resort, per se, it has many of them, and is known as a winter destination because of the mild temperatures then.

The problem with autumn being NOW (almost a full month before the season starts officially) is that it is still amazingly warm, and predicted to be so for at lest a couple more weeks. New students at the U are quite shocked by this. They may have made their campus visits in April, and now wonder what they’ve gotten themselves into. We can only tell them it DOES, eventually, cool off; you WILL need to wear sweaters and jackets. It gets COLD here, even snows a bit! Hard to believe at the moment. 

The other thing about this summer for me is that I DIDN’T GO ANYWHERE! I usually do in late July or early August. I will sometimes visit my family in California, but, these days I’m kind of snarky about that. I will not go unless I have other reasons to be there, like a conference or seminar, or a family event like a wedding, or something. I rarely travel just to travel. I have friends who used to invite me to their summer place in the mountains, and have had some wonderful adventures there, like this one. It is beautiful there in the summer. Warm days; cool nights; hiking and dining and western history. But…they sold their cabin! Without asking me! Can you imagine? 😉 They said they weren’t using it as much, and they had a good buyer, and in this economy they thought they ought to take advantage of that.

So, it’s been an odd summer. I’ve barely left my area, other than for a couple of jaunts; one up to Phoenix (even hotter) and one down to Tubac (not much cooler, but fun to explore.) As some fall musical activities have started, I found myself greeting people I haven’t seen since last spring. There is a combination of “back-to-school” and “settling-in” energy going on with a lot of these folks, and they inevitably ask me where I went this summer. When I say I was here the whole time, I get the look: “Only a complete moron would stay in the Sonoran Desert all summer without relief!” 😮 I am familiar with that look, and have steeled myself to be on the receiving end of if for another month or so. 😀

I will say that summer is a great time to hit the shopping centers and malls, if you like that sort of thing. In July, you can just about roller skate through Tucson Mall, for instance…try that in late November when the winter visitors and holiday shoppers are there! One can barely get a place to park, then. The other fun things are the restaurants. I haven’t taken much advantage, but they offer all kinds of specials and perks to get business in the summer. A couple of years ago a friend and I wandered into one of our favorites, and they were testing out their new menu. They served us two signature dishes for free! We only paid for our drinks. Good business practice, too, as this restaurant remains a favorite, and I often recommend it.

Now that work is starting to pick up again, I’m hoping the weather might mellow out soon. I’ll be able to hike here and here which I love, and perhaps rearrange my life a bit.

How has your summer been?

photo credits #1 eflon #2 Rick’s

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5 Responses to “So, that was summer, then…”

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Love the desert photos..even the winter one. British Columbia has some small desert areas in the interior about 400 kms. west of us from Vancouver. Nearby it’s vineyards and wineries region also.

My summer has been hot. Very hot. Holes in the flex duct of my AC is not helping the record heat we’ve had here in Houston.

The only thing we did during the summer was go to Galveston to the beach. The beach there is pretty yucky but the kids had never been… well, Little Fawn had been a few times before but probably not in six or eight years. So to see the boys think it was the most awesome thing ever was pretty cool for her and me.

I have pictures but no idea where they are. Maybe on my computer at home. Hopefully on computer at home!

Thank you, Jean! I didn’t know that about BC! Although I’ve spent some time in the Vancouver area, I tend not to think of Canada as having deserts. The vineyards I did know about, and believe it or not, even southern Arizona has a few of those. I was just reading in the local paper that the wine grape crop was good this year. Thanks for coming by!

Julian, yes you are in one of those hot places too! The nearest beach to me (if you don’t count a bit of lakeshore) is 6 hours! Either San Diego, or Puerto Peñasco. You must locate those pictures, certainly! Sounds like you and daughter had a lovely day. 🙂

Julian! So glad you did. My, she is mature, as I suppose you are well aware! 😉 And the boys having such fun is great to see. Very lovely family you have there, thank you for sharing. 🙂

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