Thursday, July 7, 2011

Holy Haboob! & Mean Lion Fish

Yet another incredible blast from mother nature. Have you guys seen the huge dust storm that hit Arizona? We lived there for about 14 years and dealt with them all the time, but this one was a doozy. I was driving home one day and watched one approach from behind in my rear-view mirror; it was just mesmerizing. I managed to stay ahead of it until I got home and could close all the windows - and then had to clean all 2 dozen of said windows later. I'm not sure what I would have thought if I'd seen this behemoth coming up on me. Floor it! The cloud was over 100 miles wide, over a mile high, and tootling along at 60mph. Sheesh! Great for car washes and pool cleaners, not so much for car dealerships. Here's a video, if you missed it. The music wasn't necessary and I'm not sure what the happy face is about, but there it is. Why would anyone drive into this storm? I'm just saying...



Weather sure is coming in powerful doses this year. I have to admit we're all a little nervous about hurricane season. There's no doubt we're in the rainy season, as we've been getting tropical waves passing over us about every 3-4 days now. We're still getting the majority of the downpours at night, which we appreciate, but it's pretty overcast at the moment. I did notice the ocean water was a bit cooler last weekend, and sure enough the buoy readings were down 2 degrees (to a "chilly" 83 degrees), so hopefully that's a bit of a deterrent for any storms developing here for while. We're still enjoying brisk breezes and lower humidity than usual for this time of year, so have been quite pleased with the much smaller population of mosquitoes and no-see-ums so far.

For any locals here, a warning has been issued about a surge in the lion-fish population. They can be nasty if provoked and can eat a surprising amount of fish. They're not native to the Caribbean, possibly getting caught up in hurricane currents, but could have been controlled had the locals not decimated the grouper population (you can't find snapper anymore and lobsters are getting scarce too, but I digress). The only other predator? Humans, of course, so people are being asked to eat them. Wonder if we'll be seeing them pop up on local menus. They'll be in good company with pig snouts, goat hooves, monkey meat, cow tail, and rabbit bits - and people wonder why we've lost weight since we've been here...