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Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Winter in Arizona

It was 81 degrees on Valentine's Day. And this while my grandparents in Oklahoma had just emerged from two weeks of house arrest enforced by cold piles of dense snow all around their house. While I watched longingly on YouTube and the news as people tried to drive and dig out in the Northeast. It's hard for me to believe it's February when I have to wear short sleeves.
This picture, taken at the Phoenix Zoo, seems to show miniature cowboys pointing at the caps on the Saguaro points behind them. A couple of nights last week, the temperature dropped below freezing for more than an hour. The local news goes into crisis mode for that kind of thing, reminding all viewers to protect their pets and plants! The prickly pears near our apartment fainted, diva-like, to the ground. Even mighty Saguaros can be maimed or killed by low temperatures, so caring people cover the vulnerable tips with gardening cloth (and a plastic bucket at the top in the photo) to keep them just warm enough.

Of course, by the time I took the picture, two days before Valentine's, the cloths and bucket should have been long removed. 80 degrees. The sno-cones were selling faster than they could make them.

My wool coat festers in the closet. A few nights ago I was putting long-sleeved shirts and dresses into a suitcase for storage, trying not to cover them with the tears that came because I couldn't tell when I would ever use them again.

In another few weeks I'll probably be so acclimated that I'll shiver just thinking about Boston! Alternatively, I'll be a puddle of sweat soaking into the dusty soil.