Desert Heat

Where I live it will be in the 106-116 range for quite a while, and consistently.  In a month it will reach the 12o’s.  It will not rain and the heat will be dry.  I wouldn’t be surprised if the cotton farmer’s pour more and more pesticides and herbicides over us… but luckily I will not be here.

Recently, I talked with a cashier about the weather and she said she had lived here so long, she barely noticed the heat.  Of course, she spent a lot of time in an air-conditioned grocery store, and then probably to an air-conditioned car and house.  She said it used to rain more, but it doesn’t anymore, it hasn’t rained in the summer in a few years.

A few years ago, my mate and I moved from the West to the East Coast, back to the region where I grew up.  Only about an 1 1/2 away.  We moved in the summer time.  It was desperately hot and humid, but somehow I was mostly okay with it.  We went on long walks a lot, and didn’t really worry about time of day or beating the heat… we just stayed hydrated, and didn’t worry about much else.  But I told him, I remember many more summer showers.  That is what I most recall about my childhood summers, besides vacations and adventures…the summer showers.  And I didn’t remember it being quite so hot.

That same summer, I spent awhile in Northern Virginia/Washington D.C. where I also spent a lot of my youth.  I did a good deal of walking and being outside in early-late spring and I was shocked at how hot it was there.  I knew for sure it had never been so hot, all the summer’s I spent there.  I graduated high school about the same time year’s earlier and it was not nearly as warm.

This year, I’m hearing about weather reaching over 100 degrees in NY and D.C. and I’m laughing about how some people vehemently deny the possibility of global warming.  I don’t need scientific evidence.  I can do my own study… I’ve talked to grandmas, parents, great-grandparents, and I have my own memory, over the past ten or so years, about the past 50 or so years.  I know that perspective is key and memory can be fickle… but I know when people are sure about what they’re talking about, I know when people have concrete memories about things they experienced, and cannot anymore, due to the changes in the world around us… and I wonder how does our environment effect our internal environment… how does it effect our relationships with others, our lifestyles?

Certainly, there are more temperate places to live, places more suitable for human life, than this dangerous part of the desert.  Why do I call it dangerous?  Well, my life has significantly changed since I’ve been here, and I wouldn’t say for the better or the worse, but I would say that it has been a constant struggle to find any comfort or energy here, any sense of sustainability, that has changed my entire way of doing things.  I was content, challenged and happy with my path before I moved here, and I’ve had to put the mere baggage of this environment before all those things I relate myself with to survive.

How many of us live in places that aren’t sustainable, efficient or natural for us to live in?  How often do we consider our environment’s effect on our happiness, productivity, energy, health, ability?  How much do we put into making our environment marginally manageable just so that we can survive…how much are we sacrificing our ability to thrive to live where and how we live?

Important questions, I think.  One of my favorite parts, from one of my favorite books 80/10/10 by Douglas Graham speaks about the need for a temperate environment for the human species.  He writes about how we articially create for ourselves a tropical environment.  With the use of heaters, shipping food, wearing clothes, etc.  He writes about health including a level of fitness that would sustain us through getting our own food from nature, climbing trees, swimming, walking, and having the proper foods growing near us.  This all makes sense, of course.  I don’t remember a more content and interesting time in my life, than last summer when there was an abundance of free, pickable fruit in my life.  We were new to the 811rv lifestyle and we were fruit-following.

So how did we end up in possibly the hottest climate in the U.S.?  I don’t exactly know… but I know that it has given us an appreciation and a greater focus on the goal of a Natural Hygiene lifestyle, and 811rv…and I know we won’t be here much longer, but I can never leave a place behind without thinking about the others.  I’m sure there is a way to make every place better, and a way to make every place easier to move on from, when it is necessary.  This place, and this issue will always be a part of me.  My emotional state, my lifestyle/behavior patterns, were so affected by this environment, as a karma yogi, I know there is a service for me to do here, to help others.  But first, I need to leave here for myself… luckily, there is a perfectly wonderful place to move to less than 2 hours away.  I’ll write more about that later.

In the meantime, I know the best way to nourish myself in this heat is to be well hydrated, drinking pure spring water, eating plenty of fruit, getting plenty of sleep, and moving my body enough to feel energized, balanced and well-endorphined!  I love creating words.



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