Saturday, April 28, 2007

Rain in the Desert ... is Different




Well, it's night-time here, but it's raining in our desert. A good old thunderstorm, long, hard, crashing nearby and far.

Now rain in the desert is different.

First, you can see it more than you do in cities and hilly grounds. See it coming out of this cloud, over there in the middle of the distance?

Not only that, you can often, during the day, see the rain leaving the clouds overhead, and see how that rain does not actually reach the ground. Yes, it often rains in the sky, but it's all evaporated before it makes the ground. We've even had showers where only the top half of the car's windscreen got any water. Kinda freaks out newcomers from the coasts. They never knew a) you could see rain from the clouds like that and b) it rains without raining.

Another difference is that, not having a lot of rain, we mostly don't have gutters on our houses, but "canales" (see picture on right). They just shoot the rain right off the roof.

We also do not have many, in most places we do not have any, street drains. You know, underground drains that carry water away ... with grates by the curbstones every block or so. No, our streets often are our drains. At the end of our street, at the bottom of the hill, are two huge openings right off the street down into the valley below. Splash onto the land down there.

But the most fun of all in desert rain is how the children, teens, and young adults all run out of their houses and stand on the street corners. Why? Well, if you do, as I did when new here, avoid going too close to them because the street is full of water and you do not want to splash them, for this care-taking, they'll yell scorn and even give you certain hand signs.

They want you to splash them, the bigger the better. It's a desert game. Whoopee! It's raining!!

1 comment:

ms. kitty said...

I enjoy hearing your stories of how things are in the desert. Having spent time in Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, and living in Colorado for many years, I am warmed again by your descriptions of life there. There's nothing like a thunderstorm in the desert.

 
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