Was it manna from heaven? Or a dream?
Some of each.
Manna in Phoenix (Arizona) means one thing:
Rain. Precisely, monsoons. Which normally in a 3-month season (June-Sept.) provide half our annual water supply.
Normally. This year’s monsoons — bupkus. “Nonsoons” they’re being called.
Were it not for 5 million people and sprawling behemoth of concrete, freeways and vehicles, Phoenix would eerily resemble the Dust Bowl of “Grapes of Wrath.”
Then is delivered unto us a miracle.
For the record: August 28, 2019.
Rain. Wednesday evening.
So when I saw that it was RAINING — ACTUAL WETNESS!! — I exited the pub early …
… to stand, simply stand on the dimly-lit street corner, under the manna.
It. Was. Glorious. Elevating. Refreshing.
To experience wetness … on my skin, my clothes, on my face, head, my glasses, my feet in typical flip-flips … I rejoiced.
‘Twas joyful and bittersweet.
When was the last time I saw rain? January?
Way too long anyways. It’s on record. Phoenix summer 2019 has been brutal — concurrently in Excessive Heat and Absence of Monsoons.
Everyone and everything’s feeling the pain. Some more acutely than others. I’m a water baby. Pisces. I took to pools, swimming early in life, like age 3! Water to me means Life.
Saying I’m a fish outta water in southern Arizona is a tiresome cliche — yet true.
So I stood soaking up the drops — a “regular” rain — not the torrential downpour other neighborhoods got — breathing … remembering this unfamiliar element called moisture.
I stood appreciating … reawakened to and longing for water in ways never before across MULTITUDES of residences domestically and overseas.
Then I drove home. I hoped for continued wetness. Like a child at Christmas, I didn’t want it to end. Unfortunately in my hood, it was bone dry. Sprinkled for some seconds. That’s the way of monsoons. Torrential rain here. Across the street, zip, zero, nada.
As if to prove that God is indeed cruel, this is Labor Day weekend. (Aug. 30-Sept. 1). The year’s last big blowout “while the weather’s still good” — ha! — where outdoor activities, BBQs, family vacations, camping, traffic prevail.
Weekend temps are forecast at 111 F (43.8 C). Unusually hot. Yet another Excessive Heat Warning, yawn.
And to really stick it to us, no rain in sight. One month left in the monsoon season. If the “nonsoons” remain, we’re all soooooo fucking screwed!
Thing is, going into 4 months of unrelenting HEAT and DRYNESS without replenishment from precipitation only heightened the hallelujah!!! that resoundingly rang across the Valley of the Sun on Wednesday.
‘Twas over before it began.
Roads dried up. Plants opened their arms then shriveled.
And we the people resumed being baked and grilled under a blazing sun.
Painfully apropos given a holiday weekend that’s all about parties and BBQs.