Summer is starting to set in here. Our AC has been running pretty regularly, day and night. Winter grass in the yards around our neighborhood has been turning yellow and brittle. My kids are sweaty at even the mention of climbing into the car after it’s sat in the driveway for an extended period of time. Many people, even natives, complain bitterly about the cruel, unrelenting heat of the summer. The temperatures that melt your flip-flops to the asphalt may generate nightmares for some, but I love the hot, hot sun. And I know I’m not the only one. Love the summer with me.
10 reasons to love Arizona in the summer:
1. Getting into your car after a long day in the over-air conditioned confines of your office is heaven. The automotive oven melts goosebumps off your arms and gently warms your bones…. for about two minutes (just in time for the AC to kick in nice and cool).
2. Tubing down the salt river is a relaxing and yet somehow exhausting way to spend a Saturday. Float lazily down one of the only naturally occurring areas of water in the vicinity, but remember to bring your sunscreen!
3. Scottsdale Fashion Square rocks!! I adore shopping in the huge, luxurious mall even more than usual on a really hot day. It’s an oasis with a Nordstrom, a Burberry and a PF Changs. Who could ask for more?
4. Sedona and its red rock mountains is just three hours away. When you really need relief from the heat, you just hop in your car and take a quick drive to higher elevations, cooler climates and a palm reading or two. Eat at Oaxaca while you’re there. It has the best Mexican feast within quite a distance (and that’s saying something).
5. A fabulous margarita does wonders for your spirits on even the hottest of days. I’m partial to the ones at Tia Rosa in East Mesa, but in a pinch, the Perfect Margarita at Applebees really hits the spot.
6. In Phoenix in the summer, casual clothing is a requirement. Tank tops and flip flops are appropriate pretty much anywhere, even in church. Gotta love a culture where comfort rules.
7. You can make your friends in other states feel like real weenies when they complain about the scorching 95 degree heat they’re experiencing. Go ahead and whine when you’ve made it through 121!
8. Because I’ve lived in Arizona almost my entire life, I’ve had little to no experience with mosquitoes. They just don’t like it here. When I was a camp counselor in Maine one summer in college I was horrified at the bugs the size of small birds I was constantly encountering. One day after getting up from a nap and putting on my jeans I was bitten several times on my thigh by a giant black bug that had tried to make a home in my pants. I was left with a quarter-sized welt that took weeks to clear up and a great appreciation for the desert bugs back home that hide under rocks and pretty much always leave me alone.
9. The desert sunsets in the late evening that punctuate dessert after dinner are a joy like none other. They are easy to take for granted after you’ve spent some time here and seen one every night, but they don’t get less beautiful.
10. No daylight savings time here! Seriously, what is up with all that drama? Turning the clock back and then forward again? What a bizarre confusing mess. No need for it here! We’re on NPT, ‘Normal People Time.’