Saturday, September 27, 2014

More About the Weather

Growing up in California, talking about the weather was something people did when they felt the need to make conversation, but couldn't think of anything more interesting to talk about.  However, talking about the weather in Arizona is pretty darn exciting.  Seriously.  The weather here is scary.  The earthquakes I've experienced don't hold a candle to the bizarre haboobs, dust devils, microbursts, macrobursts, rain bursts, and flash floods we get here.

So, here's the story.  We were supposed to have rain all day, but woke to another sunny, humid, sweat pouring out of every pore kind of day.  Lostine walked away from her breakfast and flopped on her side.  She just laid there in the sand for a long time as if to say, "I'm sick of this shit.  When is it going to cool down?"

I checked her vitals, and she seemed fine.  She just had this "stick a fork in me, I'm done" kind of attitude.  I sympathized with her, petted her, whispered conversation with her, and she finally got up and returned to her breakfast.  It was her turn to take a walk with me on the trails, but I was afraid that she might flop on her side out there and put me in an awkward situation.  So, I took Rock with me, which was like being a tugboat and trying to haul an ocean liner out to sea.

On the way out we passed an "Open House" sign with tinsel around it in front of my neighbor's house.  On the way home after our walk, there were a bunch of vehicles parked and people standing around by the gate we needed to get through.  When they saw Rock, they began oohing and aahing over how gorgeous he was.  One man jumped up into the bed of his pickup truck and began filming us with his mobile phone.  Rock raised his head up high and let out a little snort.  I thought, "I hope these people aren't going to be my new neighbors, because I'll obviously have no privacy."

I suspect that video of me leading Rock through the gate and down the street is probably out there on the Internet somewhere right now.  I smiled at the people, but didn't go out of my way to make conversation, and as I walked away I heard a woman say, "People around here don't say hello?"

At that point I let out a snort myself.  The pot was calling the kettle black.  I didn't hear her say hello to me.  She was just staring at us.  Hopefully, my lack of friendliness deterred them from making an offer on the house, so that someone who actually owns horses can move in.  The only people I know who get that excited about seeing a horse are people from big cities.

When I put Rock away in the barn, I looked up to see all of them lined up at the fence smoking cigarettes and staring at me.  Oooooh, I so love being watched when I'm in my back yard.  By this point I was praying under my breath that these people would not buy the house next door.

Lostine was acting more like herself, so I turned around and took her out on the trails for a walk.  She was a bit gimpy.  I stopped to pick out her feet to make sure she didn't have a foreign object wedged in there, but I think her bones and joints just knew that a storm was on the way.  As we were approaching the gate to come home, the same people as before spotted me coming and they swarmed like bees over to the trail head, talking and laughing loudly.  I thought they were coming up the trail to go for a hike, so I turned away in order to avoid a collision on the narrow trail.  Lostine and I walked for another 15 minutes or so.

The second time we attempted to return home, the truck that belonged to those people was still there, but the people were not around.  I realized that they never came up the trail, so I suspect that they were coming over to pet Lostine, and I walked off with her in the opposite direction.  Oops.  If they thought I wasn't friendly before, that maneuver left no doubt in their minds, but at least we made it home without being filmed again.

They ended up staying at that house for another hour and kept coming outside to smoke cigarettes.  I hoped they were just helping with the open house and not actually potential buyers.  Two of the people who lived next door to my old house were smokers, and they spent more time standing at the fence smoking and staring at me in my back yard than they spent inside their own home.  My husband and I used to "open house hop" back when we were in the market to buy real estate, and we never spent more than 15 minutes in each house.  Two hours seems like an awfully long time for these people to hang out in a house that is up for sale.  I did worry that they had made an offer and were filling out paperwork all during that time.

Walking the horses every day for the past week, and then walking two horses today did the trick at thoroughly messing up my right foot so that it is in pain and I am limping again.  That was my goal.  I wanted to get my foot into that condition before going in for the sonogram on Monday, so that the doctor can have something to work with.  My circulatory test came back normal.  I'm now thinking I might have tendinitis in that foot.

By late afternoon it finally started raining.  I kept waiting for a break in the rain so that I could go outside and feed the horses.  I took my camera with a towel over it outside to get a few shots of the flooding on our property.

On our way back to the house, the sky really opened up and I had to throw my camera into the horse trailer, because the towel was soaked all the way through and I wouldn't be able to keep the camera dry between the horse trailer and the house.

My husband and I were scrambling to throw hay to the horses when lightning started striking all around us.  We took shelter in the hay barn, which was probably the worst thing to do, because it's the tallest thing on our property and it's made out of metal.  So, we ran for the house, sloshing through rivers and puddles the whole way.  When we got inside, we were soaked to the bone.

I waited for the sound of the rain to stop so that I could run back to the horse trailer to retrieve my camera.  The rain didn't settle down to a sprinkle until after dark, so I had to run out there with a flashlight, and I almost stepped on a toad.  Poor Bombay had to wade through about four inches of water to get to his food.  His entire stall was flooded.  One thing I regret is not having the guy who built our barns push dirt up high and then flatten it out before building the horse barn and the hay barn, because right now they are two of the lowest spots on our property.

I'm hoping there will be breaks between systems coming through, because all this water needs time to soak into the ground.  We already had some of it leak under our bedroom door and pool on the carpet.  We almost got Stewie completely potty trained, and now we have to backslide, because none of the dogs want to go outside in this weather.  I really hope this is the last hurrah, and we can relax into the cooler temperatures and calmer weather of the fall season soon.


How Sam Sees It said...

Have you ever considered using a baby pool with outside dirt in it for the pups to use in emergencies? You could keep it in your garage. I don't know if your pups would like that or not.

I do hope you get some real horse-minded folks next door. We've been lucky, neighbor-wise (really lucky we've found out) on the horse front. The folks next to my Mom don't have horses but do love them.

fernvalley01 said...

Wow! I never think of AZ getting that much rain!

Crystal said...

Crazy neighbors! Every time I think I wanna move to a place closer to town I read your blog and am reminded why I like it out here with no neighbors.
Amazing what an amount of rain that falls at once I like no rain haha makes my life easier...except all the complaining from the husband and father in law about how we need rain

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

One of the visitors at the open house returned to snoop around the property on his own today, and he had some window stickers on his truck that gave me his identity. He's the exact opposite of what I want in a neighbor. He kills animals for sport, and loves riding ATVs. That's my biggest fear. I don't want someone moving in next door who is going to turn all those horse corrals into a racetrack for motorcycles and ATVs. I don't need the noise. I feel like I have only two choices: Loud, obnoxious people who have hobbies that conflict with mine, or quiet, bored, retired people who stare at me all day. It sure would be nice to just have some trail riders move in next door who have jobs outside the home and are too busy to be in my business all the time. The race car driver behind me is still out of work, and I'm about ready to take his race car to a demolition derby, because I am so sick of hearing him revving that engine.