So, to celebrate our anniversary of a life of heat and desolation, we headed 17 miles from our house to beautiful Mt. Charleston, a literal oasis in heart of the desert.
And my oh my, it lived up to my expectations. Saturday was to be 110 degrees and "excessive heat" warnings lit up the weather report.
To escape we headed to 6000 feet above sea level and breathed the fresh mountain air. 81 degrees.
If you're bad at math, like me, I'll spare you the calculator and tell you it was 29 degrees cooler there than it was 17 miles east and 2 miles south at my house.
We hiked through ancient, indigenous trees, and wild flowers. It was euphoria on a mountain. The children loved it. Both walked well over a mile before Spencer declared he could walk no further. Henry was a trooper. Oliver looked around happily from the ties of my Moby wrap, until the gentle swaying lulled him to sleep.
And as we walked, Derek and I discussed if we move to Mt. Charleston, (for I have decided that I must if we are to stay in Las Vegas) would we live in a log cabin? Would we have horses? Dogs were a must. Would I take doula clients if we lived so much further out? What about when it snowed? (Because, it snows there. It's a SKI resort.) We found our dream house, with a yard, a garden and a view. Only $434,000. The economy doesn't seem to touch that fancy mountain town.
We held hands with the boys and pointed out giant logs, huge bugs and all the fellow hikers' puppy dogs.
I could feel the clean cool air refreshing me, cleansing my system and my soul. I kept saying, "It's just so beautiful!"
I'm a girl from the land of trees. The barren desert landscape and heat sap my energy on a daily basis. Trees feed my spirit. So, hiking through the woods (we *almost* made it to the waterfall before we had to turn around) literally nurished me as I plunked along.
Joy. I have always loved the idea that mountains are closer to God and are akin to temples. I could feel the sanctity of the mountain as we walked. And I prayed that God doesn't decide that we need to wander the desert for 40 years. The boys didn't squabble, and we enjoyed ourselves thoroughly.
When the sun started sinking beneath the mountain walls, we headed back toward reality. Sighing as we dropped down in elevation, the heat started building on the windows of the car and we squinted in the sun.
But, we're going back next week.
Edit: We didn't get many pics. I didn't have the card in the camera, and the internal memory was nearly full. Here the two that are worth looking at:
|From August 2009|
|From August 2009|