Friday, September 13, 2013

September--and the living is sweaty

Coming from a state with mountains--New Mexico-- it was hard for me to learn about fall in Texas.

Y'see, we do have one. It comes in November.

Once in a while, we have color. If the pecans have enough water, they turn yellow, not brown. That's not too often. Sweet gums, bless their hearts, turn almost every color, A small grove will range from yellow and red to bronze and purple--all on he same tree.

Sumac, and we don't have a lot, turns red, like accent points in a rich man's landscape. Overriding colors are wheat, straw, gold. Elegant, really. Understated.

If we are lucky, we have rain and the pecans are plentiful. If we are unlucky, we have rain and the ragweed is stratospheric in pollen.

This year, we all would give anything for the rain. Drought is omnipresent. Boat docks are closing. Worse, water restrictions are increasing as we struggle to maintain some flowers, water to drink, water to bathe in and wash our clothes.

The end of August brought on a plethora of three-digit days.

My granddaughter is horrified to be wearing her band uniform tonight instead of the uniform shirt and shorts of the last two games. Temps tonight will be only in the upper 80s. They will be miserable, but no one should faint from heat stroke.

My September bill for air-conditioning could beat August.

But triple digits may abate now, most of the time. Highs in the 90s, lows in the upper 70s.

We have a Texas constitutional amendment on the November ballet to invest two billion dollars into ccreating more water reserves. The amount is paltry, but a start.

Our dead--I mean, lame--duck governor keeps running ads in Maryland, California and other places inviting bidness to Texas, where social care means we don't roust the homeless under the bridges too much, and the taxes are light. But you can't water much.

The green grass lasted unnaturally through much of July, but now, the ground is sere.

We are beginning to learn about buried soaker hoses, hand-watering, less water-demanding plants. I would hate to see the spring azaleas go away, but I would hate more showering with recycled water.

Yes, it is September in Texas. Sometimes, you can smell the honeysuckle in the air. The dry, brown grass remains from summer. Some rain will green things up. Lower cattle prices for your steaks.

It is still too hot to eat outside, mostly.  A pity. I love cool evenings with barbecue.

Tomorrow, Sept. 14, only a high of 93 or more.

Fall is coming.

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