I haven't been silent, but instead, forgot to sign off on the mic before another week-plus trip down to Baja ~ our last visit before we move there in December!
It was hot. The heat with its accompanying humidity was even more challenging than I expected. After several days I reached one level of acclimatizing, but I suspect there are many more levels to reach before one feels comfortable ~ like many of the locals I saw in San Jose going about their daily lives ~ wearing tight jeans and tight knit tops (and even sweaters! *gasp!!*) without sweat drenching through the whole ensemble or literally keeling over.
We spent the week ~ like the white-bellied creatures we are ~ under the blessed palapa, with urgently-acquired fans trained on us. Until the sun went behind the hills when we would enjoy with exuberance the short respite. At that point, every day, Sealion very firmly insisted he must stop working so that we could all go seek relief in the ocean until dark. Still with fans on high pointed directly at us, we slept in the tent on top of the sheet with sometimes only minimal comfort until morning when we would rouse as early as possible to be awake for a few moments before the sun beat down relentless again. The upside to this is that we needn't worry about sun shirts or sunscreen, because the sun was too intense for our gringo bodies to be exposed for more than a few minutes, literally.
"Impressed" was the word I came away with. The August elements left a deep and lasting impression on me.
Still, and yet, I look at the photos I took over the course of the week, and the ones of myself, and see that in every instant in every place on the spectrum of comfort-to-discomfort I was Alive.
I woke up with the sounds of the wild tweeting birds in the foreground and los gallos in the background. I breathed in and out with the sometimes-din of the cicadas as they seemed to embody in sound the humid heat. I scurried with the lizards under the junked car in the brush and frolicked with the jackrabbits as they rolled in dust. Sweat poured from pores I didn't know existed. And when the sun began to tuck behind the mountains my eyes were wide as I roamed the property with camera to absorb every contrast of long crisp shadow on desert surface. Then there was the ocean. My whole body drank in the ocean and I was the wave and the tide as it surged to meet the rising full moon. Every night I sat with eyes upturned in worship of the moonlit and starry sky. And when it thundered and lightninged in the middle of the night, my daughter and I dashed outside to dance hand-in-hand in the raindrops.
I was Alive with a life pared down to the elemental. Sun and shade, water and salt and air, dirt and wood and stone. Papaya and tequila.