Thursday, July 23, 2009

The Dry

It's been hot and by all reports, it's becoming even hotter towards the weekend.

There are many wildfires burning right now, in British Columbia, and today there were reports of a lightning Storm once more hitting the interior of the province. Parks in Vancouver have prohibited all barbecues and smoking...and people are confined to pathways only.

The Province is dry everywhere. In the Interior here, I can smell the Forest, during the day's heat. It is the smell of Fir branches, just before they ignite, in a bonfire. The Forest is tinder dry...any animal who wanders through can no longer count on stealth as branches and leaves break and crackle.

At night, lying sleepless in the heat, I feel as if there are bricks lying on my is hard to breathe. It rarely cools off; this morning at 7AM the temperature on the deck was already 21C.

It is difficult to believe how cold it was just a few months ago...I saw a photo I had taken during one of our icy spells and shook my head...was it really that cold?

The heat is enervating. I find Sun's rays to be very strong...much stronger than I remember them to be on the Coast. Perhaps it is my age, or perhaps it is global warming or even the clarity of the Cariboo's Air...but I can no longer challenge Sun's intensity and wander outside in the middle of the day.

Once upon a time, I could continue gardening, for instance, even during the peak of Sun's heat. But now, the strong rays of Sun penetrate even my trusty hat.

I find living here one of the most challenging things I have done, so far. The beauty of the central interior of the province to me cannot be denied, but there is a price to pay for the privilege of enjoying it.

For an Island girl, one used to misty, rainy mornings, I find what I call the Dry really difficult to handle. And even as I know the Island is also undergoing a heat wave, I dream of those Ocean breezes wafting through the house, at the end of a hot day.

I miss the feel of the moisture Wind carries from the Ocean on my skin. Here, we have a whole cabinet devoted to creams and lotions for dry skin care and eyes.

Weather is extreme, in the Cariboo. It is cold and sunny and dry in Winter and hot and sunny and dry in Summer.Yet, if one had an unlimited supply of Water, one could grow almost anything here during the Summer...the long days with Sun as a companion help to grow plants to enormous heights and widths, much quicker than on the Coast.

Learning to conserve Water has taught me much...both in how to do it, and then noticing when the plant actually needs it. Nature has helped where I faltered; Leaves on the plants here, even among similar species, are much thicker, glaucous, and in some cases, smaller than those growing in my gardens on the Coast.

Rarely have I seen flowers bloom with such gusto as I have this year, even with far less moisture than I am accustomed to giving.Plants will adapt to conditions presented, if I stay out of the way.

Yes. It is a challenge, living here. A challenge and an opportunity, if I leave myself open to it. There were many inherent fears I have faced, on moving to the an insular Island inhabitant for most of my life, I am not sure where boundaries lie, here in this vast Land and endless, blue Skies, fierce Storms and unbelievable Cold.

Learning to face fears always propels me forward upon a path, and if this one appears to be rocky, meandering, with too many tricks upon it...well, it is gratifying to know I am acquiring knowledge from it.

Just as our Lucky is gaining acceptance of his fear of Thunderstorms, I will gain acceptance of my fear of Lightning and Forest Fires.

I will have the opportunity to practice this afternoon, as it appears another Storm is near.

Hot and dry...with Thunder and Lightning present.

Time for the Serenity Prayer.


  1. It is distressing to note that summers are getting hotter year after year. Some parts of the world are so hot that people have died due to extensive exposure to the sun.

  2. Anonymous2:42 p.m.

    Hello Marion,

    These are magnificent images, an appropriate tribute to the power inherent in the forces of nature. Beautiful!

    We are being tested both in our outer and inner environment. And like the plants, we will adapt without any interference on our part :D

  3. It is tinder in Texas. I cannot walk barefoot outside because the dry grass will cut my feet. Even the weeds have died and the sunflowers are struggling. The only thing that seems to love this heat and lack of rain is my rosemary bush. The lavender bushes are somewhat shaded, but they are doing well.

    I have been praying for rain for months. They say the switch from La Nina to El Nino signals wetter times, but not until OCTOBER.

    I have ordered rain barrels because I can see a time where I will need it.

  4. Megan,

    During heat waves, I completely understand people searching out Malls that are air-conditioned...especially seniors. When my mother was alive, I would worry about her in extreme heat. Seniors, I heard on the TV, are advised to stay in and stay cool...if they don't have air conditioning, I'm not sure how they'll do that.


    You're right, of course. I already feel cool if the temps are in the low twenties, so should the heat wave continue, my body will grow accustomed to the higher temps I am boggled by. Yesterday I took a picture of the thermometer showing 41C, at 1:30PM.I refused to look at the thermometer after that!

    My greatest fear throughout this heat wave is fire...and I will have to learn not to worry, else I may manifest the very thing I am thinking so hard about.


    Yesterday, I attempted to climb up some boulders to pull a weed. I put my hand on one of the boulders, and actually burned my palm.

    Lavender and rosemary bushes loved the heat, when I grew them on the coast. I didn't plant any this year, since the ones I planted last year did not make it through the Winter. But they did require Water.

    We have rain barrels, and they work well, if it rains. It hasn't rained for a long while...a few weeks ago we had monsoon like Rains, which filled everything we had out up, but that Water is gone now. I hesitate to use the Water from the Well, since I don't want to run dry...the plants will have to adapt as well as they can.

    The forecast calls for hot and dry conditions, until at least next weekend, perhaps longer.