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Fire and sunflowers

“Girasol Dinamico” by Ricardo Chavez-Mendez

Can you believe it’s July already? Sure, time and tide wait for no one, but we’re halfway through 2021! That long-awaited end to our Lost Year was six months ago.

Summer is gearing up, but this year July’s sunflowers bring more than fields of sunshine. They arrive with heat, fire, and foreboding. Our forests are burning, our glaciers are melting, our lakes are drying up. Our world is too hot, too dry — and too oblivious.

But enough about that. Remember how it seemed 2020 would never end … and then it was gone? We struggled with it for what seemed like forever until we looked up and it was July 2021. How does that happen? How can one year seem like ten … that ended just last week?

Sure, our Fourth of July celebration arrives in a few days, but then even our placid night skies will burn. Our babies will wake, our elders will wince, our pets will cower, our veterans will be traumatized again. Property will burn, people will be injured, but celebrate we must. If only we could limit it to just one evening of awe-inspiring crowd-pleasing professional shows that bring people together, turn night into day, and rain spectacular, harmless fire from the sky. Instead, too often, we have thoughtless individuals breaking laws and upsetting their neighbors by igniting their own fireworks in residential areas. So much for bringing people together.

Of course there’s a lot more to July than one night (or week or month) of fireworks. It’s time for summer vacations and this year, more than ever, people want to get out and go. We have record crowds on our highways and in our airports. Record crowds at popular destinations. And if that includes you, please go carefully, considerately, respectfully. Thank you.

Yep. It’s already July 1. Who’da thunk it?

6 Comments »

  1. Well said, Susan. I agree. Our weather here on the edge of the Ozarks has been on the cooler side this season, thank goodness. But, I am reminded of the 1950’s heat waves in neighboring Kansas where I grew up. We had no a/c, just water-evaporator fans at that time and I recall having trouble just catching my breath. That means the heat will return again, only worse. It’s just a matter of time. Meantime, let’s enjoy the respite, however brief!

    • We’ve had a comfortable week in greater Denver, after a week of record-setting heat. And at the moment the eastern half of the state is drought-free (while the western half burns). I don’t know how we old farts survived in the days before a/c, but I wouldn’t be surprised if today’s hot weather is hotter. Certainly it’s more widespread and longer lasting. I’m definitely enjoying this respite, although worried that my a/c won’t hold up. People used to think Colorado didn’t need a/c!

  2. We can see fireworks from a local amusement park every night throughout the summer from our deck. Although I enjoy the spectacle, I understand the trauma the can cause to some people and dogs (they are held near the water so no worries about fire). I remember the millennial celebration that was held close to the zoo in Balboa Park. To protect the animals, they used low trajectory and very quiet fireworks. They were equally beautiful and much safer. So far, we have enjoyed cool temps (low 70s) but I imagine things will heat up in several weeks… they always do. Stay safe and as cool as you can! .

    • Currently, at 10:15 am, it’s 66 degrees here. Quite the change from last week. How thoughtful to choose fireworks that wouldn’t alarm the animals! You’d think in Colorado, where it seems almost mandatory to own at least one dog, people would be more considerate.

  3. The different varieties of change has been on my mind too.  I think it was on 60 minutes that I saw a reporter standing on a sand bar in the middle of Lake Mead.  He mentioned that he was standing 130 feet below where the waters surface was in 2002.  130 feet times the number of acres contained in Lake Mead is an astronomical amount of missing water.  And guess what I realized?  There’s not a damned thing anybody can do about it.

    Besides the inability to avoid noticing weather changes, the social climate is consumed with what appears to be pure unadulterated hatred on both sides of any controversial subject.  I think the vile, condescending, hate filled rhetoric of our recently deposed by popular demand ex-president is the sole reason.  Never before in my 81 years can I remember a person who (in the face of documented audio and video evidence) denied every piece of factual evidence.  Surely people aught to realize what an aboration (deviancy from the norm) this miscreant was and still is. 

    • Phoenix, Tucson, and Las Vegas, to mention a few, depend on the Colorado River for water. Hard to believe that little trickle I have stepped across high in our mountains grows to sustain those cities … and all their lawns and golf courses and swimming pools. Or used to. The river was great enough to form the Grand Canyon, but man has for years been draining it dry before it ever reaches the ocean. Not to mention continuing to build as though water is an infinite resource. And that was before all the lakes and reservoirs started drying up. It’s not like we in Colorado are hogging all the water. If the snowpack isn’t there, the river won’t be there. Period. Ignore nature at your peril.

      I agree the social climate has become unpleasant, often dangerous. And I, too, blame our ex-president for unleashing and encouraging all the divisiveness and hatred. It’s scary to contemplate, frightening that such a man was ever elected in the first place. And I haven’t words for a political party that continues, against all reason, to embrace him. At the same time, I realize that my disdain for them is just a reflection of their disdain for me. Each side blames the other for being stupid, ignorant, selfish. Rightly or wrongly. How and where does it stop?

Now that I've had my say ...

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