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High desert

2004-01-07 18:31:41.106903+00 by Dan Lyke 9 comments

We rearranged pictures in the house, one of which was a version of that one down there on the left, and I was reminded of the high desert. I'm sure others don't find the same sort of beauty I see in that bleak terrain, but those lands are a place I don't want to have a relationship with because I know it'll just end badly, yet the tug is still there.

[ related topics: Photography Archival ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: High desert made: 2004-01-11 15:10:05.666517+00 by: meuon

Like you, I love the air and feeling of the high desert. It comes down to, a great place to visit, but no way to live there (for me anyway).

#Comment Re: High desert made: 2004-01-11 19:40:41.929759+00 by: Larry Burton

I've been living in Tucson mostly since December 1. I've had little time for sight seeing due to the intensity of the equipment start up but my body feels the effects of living in the desert. My sinuses have been bleeding since I first arrived here and my lips have been so chapped that they have bled. I wake up every morning around three with my mouth so dry I gulp down a couple of glasses of water before going back to sleep... a far cry from waking up to get rid of water.

Still, Tucson's landscape does have an appealing nature and I have enjoyed the few jaunts I have had out into the desert and up into the mountains here. I can't describe the beauty I see out here as "pretty" but it is very appealing. Around 650,000 people seem to thrive out here.

#Comment Re: High desert made: 2004-01-12 05:55:21.141767+00 by: meuon

Your body will adjust to the dryness.. hopefully.

#Comment Re: High desert made: 2004-01-12 12:21:25.296248+00 by: John Anderson

Larry, I spent 7.5 years in Tucson while I was in grad school. If you're getting that dehydrated, you really need to make more of an effort to get more fluid during the day -- a lesson that all newcomers have to learn, it seems. (The first year we lived there, I don't think I urinated in June -- all the water was coming out in other ways...)

How are you liking it aside from the "natural beauty" thing? Towards the end of our time there, my wife and I were really ready to leave -- the traffic, the damn blowing dirt, and general "ugh" of living there took their toll.

#Comment Re: High desert made: 2004-01-12 12:25:03.338831+00 by: John Anderson [edit history]

#Comment Re: High desert made: 2004-01-12 20:30:07.736257+00 by: Mars Saxman

It sounds like you're having an unusually rough time of it. Keeping a glass of water by your bed is normal; bleeding sinuses and continuously chapped lips is not. You have to drink what feels like an unreasonable quantity of water in that kind of environment. Drinking when you feel thirsty is not enough. Make a point of keeping a large bottle of water or iced tea near your work area; you need to make it easy to sip as you work, instead of waiting for breaks. Don't rely on soft drinks and sugary fruit drinks; if you drink enough to stay hydrated, you'll absorb an unhealthy quantity of sugar.

I was pretty uncomfortable when I first moved to Nevada, but I did adjust to it after a couple of months. I call the desert "beautiful", but that's really more about its emotional impact than its actual aesthetic appeal. Awe-inspiring, majestic, complex, dynamic, stark, powerful, barren, mysterious; I hated Reno but loved the surrounding country and wish I had some excuse to go back and spend more time there.


#Comment Re: High desert made: 2004-01-12 21:32:21.549994+00 by: Dan Lyke

What Mars said about the impact. It's striking more than beautiful.

And the mantra of the Burning Man[Wiki] folks is "piss clear". If your urine has color, you're not drinking enough water. The tough part about this is that a few hours is enough to change from clear to colors that look like you've hit 'em with black light.

#Comment Re: High desert made: 2004-01-13 19:41:13.468647+00 by: Shawn [edit history]

As I mentioned, I spent three months in lower Arizona. (Before that I was in Oklahoma for two months.) I also spent two weeks a year, for six years, over in the Yakima (WA) desert area. I second the "drink what feel like obscene amounts of water" and "piss clear" advice. I know it feels like it's way too much, but you really do need it. My first thought on reading I gulp down a couple of glasses of water before going back to sleep, was "oh, that's not enough". Drink more.

#Comment Re: High desert made: 2004-01-15 06:59:49.327149+00 by: Larry Burton

Thank y'all for the advice. I try to drink water everytime the opportunity affords itself but the job is on the plant floor of a food industry company and drinking water is only allowed around the drinking fountain. I make trips by there regularly and get a quick gulp each time. I'm drinking about three glasses of water at each meal and downing a couple of extra bottles of water during the day. Twelve and thirteen hour work days for eleven days at a stretch doesn't allow me much opportunity to take good care of myself but I'm trying. At least my piss hasn't been too far from clear except for a couple of days out here. I'm beginning to adjust to the dryness but I'm ready to head back to Georgia.

Overall I would agree with the term "striking" as a better description than beautiful for the landscape out here but a trip to the Desert Museum sure did highlight some things of beauty to be found amongst the striking landscape. I had no idea that there would be so many different varieties of hummingbirds living in the desert. I just never thought about it.