I’m not in Kansas, but I’m close enough.

When relocating to a part of the world that you’ve never lived in, there’s always a lot that needs to be done. Moves of that magnitude need to be coordinated. Employment needs to be secured. Housing should be established. School records need to be transferred (if there are children involved). Boxes eventually need to be unpacked.

There’s more than enough to do and not enough time, or hands, to help get everything done.

Suffice it to say, anyone in that type of situation is going to be distracted for quite some time. Appreciating life? Maybe life is in a box that you have to unpack?

A week after I had exploded a lizard with my little piggies, I needed to run some errands. What they were, and where I had to go are inconsequential. As I was walking to the car from the temporary residence where my family and I were residing, I was making a mental note of what needed to be done. It was just about to be noon.

Noon during an Arizona summer is when absolutely every one is inside. Dry Heat or not, the Sun is a crushing ball of hate at that time of the day, during that time of the year, in the desert.

As I put my hand on the door handle of our rental car, I spied, out of the corner of my beady little eye, a Wizard of Oz cosplay happening across the street:

What you’re seeing is a bona fide Dust Devil. I apologize for the vertical display. Regardless of my level of distraction at the time, I did have the presence of mind to tip my phone sideways. Hence the video being full frame. Facebook’s gotta facebook, I guess.

So, what’s a dust devil? 

Dust devil’s are the kid sister of tornadoes. They can be as tall as 650 feet high, and anywhere between 10 to 100 feet in diameter. 

In general, dust devils happen when a part of the ground heats up faster than all of the other ground surrounding that part. As the air rises above this super-heated patch of ground (warm air rises, cool air sinks…) it conflicts with the cooler air around it creating the funnel shape of the dust devil. If a gust of wind picks up, it blows the dust devil along. 

Did I know that it was a dust devil? Fuck no. If I’m being honest, I thought that I was finally having that stroke people keep pushing me towards.

No one but myself was in the parking lot at the time. There were zero people walking on the street. Cars weren’t even slowing down. I was the only person outside to witness something like that.

And it was an amazing mental cleanser that made my errands that much more palatable. Our desert year was shaping up nicely.

 

 

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