A wall of dust, driven by burst of wind up to 30 MPH, is called a haboob, or dust storm. Denny and I were dropping off the garbage on our way to our evening walk. We found ourselves in a swirl of tree seed under a sky of dark cumulous clouds. A large brown cloud was spreading and we thought better of the walk and went back inside. The wind is still whipping the trees, no bird or bunny in sight. There is a weather alert for both the haboob and a severe thunderstorm. Good sleeping weather!According to about.com this happens about three times per rainy season (that would be July through September), but I think that this year has been a little more active. Scottsdale is not immune, since it has more length than width and parallels Phoenix for much of its area.
Speaking of dust and dirt, can you find the gecko in the picture? Hint – it’s over my head, pun intended. This past weekend I had been looking outside the back patio, observing the antics of a young man who was looking under the utility covers by the wash past our patio. He’d angle the cover to look in the access hole, replace it and then jump up and down. My curiosity overtook the better of me, and he informed me that if you jump up and down it chases the geckos out. Fortunately for the geckos he was not successful in capturing any that day. Up to then I had not seen any at all. To his credit, every day since then I have seen several each day, and hear them rustling through the underbrush by the walkways. They are pretty funny in the way they angle up their tails as they run for cover when confronted by humans. Their camouflage is amazing. Wonder how they fare when the haboob rakes the land.