Cabin Fever



Taken in the White Mountains in July 2014. (Or maybe 2013?)

Here in the desert late July is the equivalent of late February in parts on the country that have all four seasons. While I technically leave the house every day (to swim and walk the dog) I am not enjoying being outdoors much. I have the desert version of cabin fever.

We have moved our swimming to early evening for as long as the monsoons allow. At 5:00p it is still 100° but the sun is sinking, the rays at a less harsh angle. And so I swim for an hour and then sit under the patio for 5 to 10 minutes to dry off before the heat once again sends me inside. That and the need to make some sort of dinner.

The afternoons drag long and hot.  Now I truly understand the concept of the siesta!

My son and I have done some of our summer outings, but only the ones that involve being indoors. We spent one afternoon at Lowe’s, my son picking out light fixtures, appliances and faucets for his dream home. We have been to the used book store and several programs at the library.  Next week we will paint ceramics on base.

I miss our usual July camping trip in the mountains for a week. I long to be outside under a cool canopy of trees listening to the babble of a creek.  I miss simply being outside and not sweating. My evenings on the “front porch swing” are on hiatus for the moment.  For me it is harder to stay indoors during the summer than it ever was during my Northern winters.

Today we are mixing things up a bit by heading to Phoenix.  We will go to the really good used clothing store for kids and then to a baseball game.  Inside. Yes, the Arizona Diamondbacks play indoors, sort of.  They have the option of closing the stadium  all up and turning the a/c on.  Or they can open the roof and/or giant windows.  It is extremely odd to me to watch baseball in an air-conditioned building.  While understandable it still feels wrong, like the game has been twisted into something too comfortable and it no longer feels like real baseball.

Soon the afternoon rains (or at least rumbles of thunder) will start and our routines will change again.  Storminess will be a welcome change , though no help in getting outdoors more.  If anything it makes getting a swim in more difficult.  But it is easier somehow to be inside reading a book or watching an old movie with rain and wind lashing about. Being inside during a storm makes sense in a way that being inside during a sunny summer afternoon doesn’t.

Here are pictures of the sky as I write this Monday afternoon about 3:00p:


The sun pours down from a bowl of blue completely ringed by storm clouds.



To the North and the Catalina Mountains.


To the South.



To the West.


To the East.

The wind is picking up and the distant rumbles of thunder are getting closer.  Rain is falling in the mountains.

Happy July Thunderstorms!

J is for Jump Rope

Cool clouds yesterday afternoon! (Much more interesting than a picture of a jump rope)

With the temporary demise of my beloved treadmill I have been pondering how to meet my exercise goals. Right now I am looking at a temporary change, I have hopes my treadmill will be repaired in a week or two. (You will just have to wait until ‘T’ for the full story!)

For now I have lowered my walking goal from 10k steps to 8k.  This is doable during the week, the weekends are more of a challenge.  To make up those 2k steps I have decided to…jump rope!  Like a kid again.  Only now I am an adult, a middle age adult.  With a middle aged body that hasn’t jump roped in a long, long, long time.

I love the idea of being able to jump rope again.  It is a great workout.  But when did it get so hard to do?  As a kid I was one of the many to spend my recess jumping rope.  I don’t remember it being hard or being winded or my knees hurting.  It was just fun.  Jumping rope at my age is not fun, it’s exercise.  I do so wish it were fun though. Maybe in time?  And if not, it is only for a week or two.

The sky was gorgeous yesterday, a nice distraction while jumping rope.

Besides, it is good to take advantage of the heat holding off a bit longer.  We have had some rain and lovely cool temperatures since Sunday.  A rare April desert treat, it would be a shame not to get outdoors a bit more.

Baby lemons enjoying a cool drink of rain this morning.

I am thinking 2 to 5 minutes of jump rope is equal to 2k steps.  Please don’t disagree, my knees don’t want to hear it.