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Mpls, MN, United States

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Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Solstice statistics, et cetera

According to both wunderground.com and the Sunset Calculator (courtesy of the Adventists), tonight, on the longest day of the year, the desert sun will set at only 8:00 p.m. In Auburn, it will set at 9:09, and in Bowling Green, daylight will prevail until 9:54. It's only 4 degrees warmer in BG than in Auburn right now, and nearly 40 degrees cooler than DHS (at 7:12 p.m., 107°). According to wunderground, BG is under both a tornado watch and flood warning. It's about enough to make one miss the Midwest.

The desert does, however, have its merits. Bryant has posted a bevy of photos from last weekend's trip through deserts in California, Nevada, and Arizona. He didn't include any captions, so here are mine: his cousin got married; Sunny and I wore large hats; the Wonders brought squirrels (which, in a move that might surprise those of you aware of my long-standing vendetta against those brownie-stealing, early-morning-rugby-playing rodents, I permitted to climb upon my person); we saw Vegas and the Hoover Dam; there were lots of cousins; it was hot.

There are no photos, however, of what may have been my favorite part of the trip, which was sleeping under the stars on Thursday and Friday nights. Although we paid for a proper camping site and Colleen set up her massive 6-man tent, Bryant, the Wonders, varying numbers of teenage cousins, and I threw our sleeping bags on massive flat stones just beyond the rocky hill visible in this picture. It was so dark and the skies so clear that even in my contacts-out, glasses-less, mole-like blindness, I saw a shooting star Thursday night. Prescott's at 5,000 feet, so even though it reached the 90s during the day, it cooled into the 60s at night. I slept unbelievably well both nights, although Friday we did have a few drunken visitors around 2:00 a.m. (whose shouts awakened me for just a few seconds, but were a bit more troubling to the rest of the group). The mornings were glorious and cloudless, full of golden sunlight reflecting off the encircling stones after a crisp, pink-rimmed dawn.

Short solstices and a distinct lack of thunderstorms aside, therefore, the desert is still a pretty great place to spend a summer.

2 comments:

Ellen said...

I'm curious, do you really miss bowling green?

Cerise said...

Not all of it... but parts of it, definitely.