Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Dust, dust, dust

Who needs a safari when you've got Africa right outside your window? That huge dust cloud that blew westward out of the Sahara Desert last week has reached Texas. Actually, it reached Texas incrementally over the past couple of days, but today the effect was unmistakable. A thick haze hung over everything, obscuring visibility on the ground, in the sky, everywhere. Distant objects--be they buildings, cars or clouds--took on an indistinct, grayish-brown hue. The effect wasn't as thick or ominous as the thick smoke clouds that obscure our skies in those odd years where wildfires rage out of control in Mexico. Mexican smoke tends to form a thick blanket overhead that is reminiscent of overcast skies, although there's no moisture there and negligible cooling effect. This dust from Africa is spreading itself evenly from the ground to the sky, a uniform, nearly intangible haze that brings to mind Martian dust storms more than anything else. It's an interesting phenomenon, but I hope it clears out sooner rather than later.

Now Playing: Bonnie Raitt Luck of the Draw

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