No you dummy, not chihuahua as in dog!
Chihuahua as in Chihuahuan Desert.
I live in it. Actually IN it.
I feel so proud.
I have no idea why I do, but I sure do.
I mean I could say I live on the South Side of the Bronx.
But I don’t.
I live in the second largest desert on the North American continent, the third largest in the Western hemisphere. I get to strut my stuff doncha agree?
If you look at the map here, you can find me by looking about 42 miles northwest of El Paso, and there I am.
That’s me, waving.
Okay, so you might really have to zoom in to see me, but I’m wearing red shorts and a dark green top.
The sun is shining today, which is a first in about a week, as we are in what are called the “monsoons” right now. It rains for about 30 minutes a day. The desert sure appreciates it, and it barely bothers anybody. Given that we are in a drought, everyone is pretty darn happy about the rain, and nobody would dare complain.
On my daily walks through Chihuahua, there are numerous yucca plants.
In fact, these can be found planted all over Las Cruces. People use them as decorative plants in their yards, and they are located along streets and highways as well as a favorite planting for business establishments. The plant on the left is the yucca.
The photo at the right is Mesquite, of the Chilean variety I believe. The desert is full of these, with sharp thorns, frilly foliage and the seeds are in these long bean pods. Extraordinarily beautiful yellow flowers precede. These are also used by many as decorate plants, though to farmers and cattle raisers, Mesquite is considered a nuisance plant.
The road runner is the state bird and can be found just about everywhere.
One dropped into our backyard yesterday and a close up suggested that they are somewhat iridescent in coloring.
They are all over the desert, leading their young. The young can fly at a very young age, necessary it seems to keep up with mom who sprints along at a pretty nifty speed–BEEP, BEEP.
The one thing that is rather inexplicable to me, is that my neighborhood sits pretty much isolated in the desert. It consists of about five blocks of homes total. There are no large housing developments nearby. All consist of fairly small developments like mine, or those that grew more haphazardly closer to the mountains and are rural in nature, allowing for all manner of horses, chickens and other domesticated animal enclosures.
So why do I look out to my neighbor’s roof and see pigeons patrolling? Our neighborhood has a rather large flock of pigeons and also doves that seem to enjoy life with us. They are untroublesome certainly, but I also think of pigeons as living mostly in urban areas, asking for handouts in parks and central squares. It was a surprise. I’m also uncertain about a rather large black bird with a long tail who may be a mockingbird type. It certainly has a wide range of “songs”. In fact a few sound much like shrieking babies.
The other anomaly here in my desert neighborhood is the propensity of nearly everyone to have a dog or dogs. Most, sad to me, are kept outside. They of course react to every noise. Surely they are not security animals, for one would have to be an idiot to choose this area to rob, since it is rather hard to get “lost” in the crowd as it were. The get-away factor is missing in the wide-open desert. So having dogs outside is a curious question. Is it to keep snakes at bay? As usual, the little dogs fare better, usually being allowed “house” privileges.
Hope you liked the little tour of my desert home.