Siesta in Mingus

Texas heat and the great, fiery bronze orb in the sky drives us into long siestas these August days.  Temperatures in the 100s bleaches the hair on my horses.  Star, my big paint gelding, loses the black color on his head to a color of creamed coffee and his browsing during the afternoon comes in bursts of fifteen or twenty minutes before he seeks the shade of the live oak trees in the corral.

I stay inside the house from about 11:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m.  At six o’clock I go down to the corral to feed the horses and my barn cat, Painters.  But, most of the day is siesta, hiding from the heat.  If this is a foretaste of global warming, we are all in for despairing afternoons.   Buy misters to put on the porches, turn the air conditioners to 75 deg. F. and put the ceiling fans on medium speed.  Put ice cubes in the bathtub with your daily wash.

The highest spot in Texas is in the Guadalupe Mountains of west Texas.  Guadalupe Peak is 8,749 feet.  Is it cool there?  The National Park Service that manages the park does not report the temperature on their web page.  I frankly can’t answer if it is cool or not on Guadalupe Peak.  I’m busy taking my siesta in Mingus.

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12 Comments

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12 responses to “Siesta in Mingus

  1. I was never much of a nap-taker, but that heat would change my mind. This is my first full summer here in Minnesota in many years. Santa Fe had little to no humidity. It’s the humidity that wears me down. But then, so would 100 + degrees. Siesta serves a valuable function. Mingus, Texas, has a nice ring to it. Sounds old-west.

  2. It’s damn hot here too. The swamp coolers that everybody has here can’t keep up during monsoon season when the air is more humid, as they add more moisture to the air (they work great in June).

    We live at about 5,000 ft. When we drive up to the top of Coronado Park, it’s amazing, you get out of the car and a chill of sweet cool air causes unexpected shivers. I think the elevation there is around 8,000, it’s a steep rocky road to the top. As we ascend into the clouds the air refreshes. The birds know.

    Mingus—we have a Mingus Peak in AZ. It’s an odd name, I looked it up—looks like it’s a surname and has no other meaning. Do you know?

    Teresa, everything I know about Minnesota came from those John Sandford books! His descriptions of MN are the best thing about his books, I think.

    • Would love to be able to drive up 3,000 feet, just for a moment. I go look at the weather radar for New Mexico around Santa Fe and Taos almost daily and read the temps for those places. Ah, well, mild winters here in Texas is generally a plus.

      • Mild winters are what it’s all about! Yes we have a couple months of Very Hot Weather, but who doesn’t? The east coast just went through a bad heat wave, they make such a fuss! I always tried to savor every moment of summer when I lived there, because in a flash it’s over, and before you can say Happy Halloween you’re struggling with heating bills no one can afford but the rich. I spent every long winter freezing and sniffling and miserable.

      • That’s right. Not much we can do about it. I have friends in Taos and they have long winters. ‘Specially this last winter.

  3. Koda'sTotems

    Jack, I feel for you. Temps in the 100+, added to that- humidity… I just can’t do it. Not with my sanity intact. I’m at about 6700 feet here in Raton and there’s very little humidity (not when my comparison is MN). The sun is intense in the afternoon, but find a patch of shade and it’s comfortable. We rarely get above 90 here in the mountains. I’d be exactly like you- siesta’ing the afternoons away. Anything else is just not healthy when you’re dealing with that kind of climate.

  4. It sure is hot and there is really nothing that can be done in this heat is there—except stay in doors and nap. It rained the other day—a big storm but short lived. Cooled the air to 80 degrees. My horses were loving it—prancing around, running, kicking like yearlings. Be careful out there.

  5. Kittie Howard

    Jack, I’m convinced one has to be born into this heat. And this includes the common sense from knowing to stay indoord during the heat of the day. I personally thrive on the humidity, love the sweat (perspiration!) that crawls down my neck — but all to a point. My grandmother used to water down the tree near the bedroom window before bedtime. But, mainly, like you, we took our naps and otherwise waited it out. But they say with global warming wheat will be growing near Canada’s Hudson Bay, that the South will be too hot for cotton. Times, they are a changin’.

    • You have mentioned that the heat cleanses the pores. It does that, for sure. Water down the tree. That condensation helps out tremendously. I used to push the bed up to the window and put the pillow in the window sill to get the cool air. I do love refrigerated air conditioners. We did not have a lot of disposable income back then.

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