Cabin fever 

Is that what you call it when it’s too hot to go outside?

I associate it with stories of frontier families snowed in for winter, where, when spring comes, neighbors wander by the cabin to find the family went mad from forced proximity and bludgeoned each other to death. (Or ate each other. I’m not so good on frontier history. I grew up in the land of the pilgrims and the Revolutionary War, after which, we were informed, some other things apparently happened in other, less important parts of the country).

But it seems a pretty good term for what happens when stepping outside feels like walking into an oven, where the heat feels like something alive but not sentient, simply a force to be endured. It’s the time of year when you walk out of the house at night and think, well, that feels better, then realize that it’s still 96 degrees.

It’s also the time of year when the creepy crawlies outside start to get fed up with the heat, too. We apparently have some kind of haven for spiders above our bathroom ceiling; last year around this time, we’d walk in and turn on the light and find a dozen baby spiders on the bathroom ceiling; this year, we discovered that was very much seasonal. Baby spiders here aren’t all that small, so all I can say is thank god the husband is willing to do spider duty.

But the spiders aren’t so bad. Mostly I miss being out in the sunshine and fresh air, going for walks and looking at the plants and animals in the arroyo. (It might be cool enough to walk at 5:30-6:00 in the morning, but let’s not get crazy here.)

In the meantime, have a picture of some oleanders, taken between my door and mailbox as the sun went down.

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