Ah June…


A picture of weeds dying in my backyard from lack of water. I love the desert.

It’s 23 minutes past midnight here in El Paso, Texas, and that means it’s June 1st. What does that mean to me?

First, that there’s only one week left of school here, which is awesome, because I walk/jog to the local elementary school (2 mile round trip) every morning and afternoon during the school year. It’s not that bad in the fall and winter, but, living in the Chihuahuan desert, come spring/summer, we’re talking temperatures easily in the 90-100 F range by 10 AM.

Second, it means bug & critter season. Up until yesterday I was feeling pretty high on my horse. Unlike every year before this, I hadn’t seen a single fire ant, cockroach, moth, or scorpion outbreak. It was unusual, because I guarantee you, every year it happens. Last year for unknown reasons we had a moth PLAGUE. On one particular night I counted 27 moths in my house and several hundred just outside my back door. I don’t know where they came from or why they were here, but the past few years, they’ve been steadily growing worse. It’s frightening. I don’t mind moths as a species, but when they’re ricocheting off your ceiling at 2 am, it sure does make it hard to sleep.

Unfortunately, yesterday I woke up to the horrors of spring again. A roach was dead in my bathtub, and it was being mauled into tiny bits by hundreds of ants. They’d come up the tub pipes in the bathroom. Yay spring.  I have since caught (just since yesterday) 7 huge roaches, including the one that crawled under my desk not 10 minutes ago. Little did it know that I’ve had years to train my cats to hunt the little beasties, and as a reward, they get cat treats. It’s very effective. *shudder* I’ve also seen one tale-tell dark brown moth from years past, and now I’m avidly waiting for the rest of them. No scorpions yet, but they’re coming. I know it.

It’s not like my house is particularly filthy either… I just live in the middle of a desert where these little pests have nothing better to eat than the cat food in my kitchen, so like clockwork they move in come spring. I put out bait, roach traps, spray bug barrier.. it makes no difference. The lil beasties will share my home with me until fall, and then they’ll disappear for a blissful 6 months, only to return next spring.

What else does spring bring? A priority change in my workload. Since school is out, I end up babysitting for three months, often multiple children, and that means spending 12 hours a day doing art/blogging/writing isn’t going to happen. You parents out there know this… trying to get -anything- done while a group of kids is poking at you every five minutes is nearly impossible, but I’ll try nevertheless.

What I -need- to do is work on projects that are going to actually get me paid this summer. (as evidenced by this last month where I spent the last week eating a meal a day consisting mostly of tortilla’s turned into peanut butter and jelly burritos cause I didn’t have the funds to go by bread) and water. That means art for the most part. What I -want- to do is write. I have horribly neglected my writing the last few months, and the year seems to be passing me by at a frightening rate. Unfortunately for me, it’s one or the other. I have to balance the two and decide which is more important to me for the summer, because it’s going to be impossible to get any work done on both. Art takes too much time (often 9-14 hours straight-through for once piece spread over 3-5 days) to be able to actively handle that, writing, and life in general. I have to sleep and eat and interact with humans at some point. If I write, I want to be able to sit down, undisturbed, and work on my writing/editing for days at a time. I desperately want to do that… but I don’t know that I’ll be able to. It’s frustrating.

Anyways, I shall continue to blog regularly, read, and review books. Why? Because I enjoy it! It’s my one hobby that I don’t feel pressured to work at, and it’s almost calming in my otherwise chaotic day. The one drawback is that means I need to finish “sorting” my digital library.

Remember that post not too long ago about my e-library needing a dewy-decimal system? yah. Out of the nearly 9,000 books I’ve obtained, I’m down to sorting the last 6,600. See, I’ve made progress. One day I will be finished and I can push a button labeled “read a random book” and POOF! It’ll be tagged and have all it’s meta data, and be ready to be transferred to my kindle. Why is this project taking so long? Because I’m going through my library book-by-book, looking up the meta-data, labeling it with title, author, series, custom genre tags (that I actually understand) and the synopsis, then converting it to my kindle’s format, and marking whether I’ve read/reviewed it, and what I rated it at. With all my books, it’s the only feasible way I could think of organizing the monstrosity to keep track of what I’ve already read and what I’m reading when I pick it up. Gone will be the days of picking a random book from my kindle library based on cover and having no idea what it’s about without an extensive google search!

Maybe my OCD is getting the better of me.

Ahem. Anyways, it’s late, and I’m going to endeavor to sleep even though it’s currently in the high 80’s and I’m fully aware that there are giant roaches just waiting for me to turn out the lights. Did you know they can fly? It is the most terrifying thing on Earth.