Desert Life

June 12, 2011

I have lived in Arizona for more than 20 years.  I moved here originally after my first year on tour.  I tried the Florida thing for a year, but didn’t like the bugs, the humidity, and the wind.  A friend’s parents bought a house at Desert Mountain in North Scottsdale.  I stayed with her for the winter and I was hooked.  It was hard not to be.  I was living in a beautiful house and playing a great golf course with amazing facilities.  I missed and still miss some things about living back East.  There are no UTZ BBQ rippled potato chips here.  There are no pizza subs or snowball stands.  And worse of all there are no steamed crabs!  Our family is there and we miss them but our New York experiment (We left AZ for a short time in 2006) to get us back East didn’t work and as my Mom says, “Arizona suits us”

I love living in the Arizona desert.  First, the weather here is amazing.  We have over 300 days of sun per year.  And it is warm.  I am a wimp!  The perfect temperature for me is about 90 degrees with very little humidity. People ask how we deal with the hot summers and I am not going to lie, it can be pretty brutal.  But we have pools and air conditioning and for most of the year, the weather is perfect.  I’ll take 110 degrees over 10 degrees any day of the year!  Secondly, we have beautiful landscaping.  It is different from the East but it is still beautiful.  The desert comes alive with different plants blooming at different times of the year.  One week, the prickly pear cactus’ start to flower.  A few weeks later the saguaro’s bloom.  And the mountains are fantastic.  I remember the first time I noticed how the sun setting turned the mountains purple.  I finally knew what the lyrics  “purple mountain majesty” in the song “America the Beautiful” meant.  (Each time I see the mountains turn that shade of purple I can’t help but break into song much to whomever is with me’s chagrin)  There is also plenty to do here.  We are only an hour’s flight to Vegas or LA. The Grand Canyon is a 3-hour drive.  We have the arts, a zoo and botanical gardens.  We have the Phoenix Coyotes and a couple other professional sports teams.  I have discovered good Mexican Food.  There is hiking, year-long outdoor tennis and plenty of great golf courses.  Football and all sporting events come on TV early in the day and are finished in time to go to bed at a decent hour.  We get lots of visitors.  It’s a good place to live.

There are some disadvantages to living here however.  That same beautiful desert is home to snakes, lizards, scorpions, coyotes, javelina, tarantulas, bobcats and mountain lions.   All but a mountain lion have been in our backyard!  Just two days ago as I was about to let Bella outside, a rattlesnake was laying right on our patio. My husband went out with a shovel and after about 10 whacks he  finally tossed  it into the desert. (It was gone the next morning-easy food for another desert dweller)

Here is the little bugger (this picture was taken through the door!)

We had a visitor once at our front door.  I looked outside and a javelina had decided that the rocks by our front door would make a good bed!  If you have never seen a javelina, they look like a wild pig but are actually in the rat family. Normally they travel in packs and have been known to eat small dogs and cats.

Javelina at the Front Door

Another time when cleaning up from a party, I was moving a couple of pool rafts and discovered a tarantula.  They say they are not poisonous, but they are very hairy and scary so I decide to wait to clean up later!

I named this Tarantula "Tina

I guess that is the price we pay for living in such a beautiful place.  Actually we are  living in their world.  We are the ones who took over their habitat and made it our own.  It’s kind of cool to be so close to nature.  I like being out in the desert and hearing the coyotes howl and the owls hoot.  I like looking up at the sky and seeing a million stars and knowing that this world is so much bigger than me. I like living the desert life.  I wouldn’t want it any other way.


One Response to “Desert Life”

  1. Mom Says:

    Good one Tee – even illustrated. Good job. Block obviously un-blocked. xxoo

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