Monday, February 23, 2009

the weather

Everybody keeps asking me if it's really hot here. The answer: yes. But it's also really cold sometimes. The past month the temperature dropped to 12 degrees some nights, and that's cold if the daytime is around 28 degrees. We slept with blankets, and sweaters, and huddled up. Desert nights can really be cold!
Then, suddenly, it turned hot, really hot. Bedtime temperature: 33 degrees. These differances are tough on your body, especially if you're used to slowly warming up after winter and gradually adjusting to cold when summer's finished (also known as spring and fall). Here, the heat jumps on you.
After the scorching week which followed the cold month of January, this morning I woke up to a whirling wind. The Harmattan has arrived. It whirls and swirls, lifting the red desert dust to taint the sky pink. Now and then a mini-dust-tornado passes by, its funnel lifting the dust, and plastic bags, and bits of paper, and everything else in its way, high into the sky.
One day I came home from work, and the area around my house looked like, well, yes, a hurricane had passed through: all sorts of garbage, leaves, dirt, dust, plastic... everywhere. It doesn't surprise me that this wind carries the red desert dust all the way to Europe sometimes. Next time your bike/car has a light red layer of dust, try to image where it came from and how it got there!

The colour in the picture is not off...the red is all dust...


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