"I dream of a hard and brutal mysticism in which the naked self merges with the nonhuman world and somehow survives...Paradox and bedrock."-Edward Abbey

08 July 2014


Looking up Dry Gulch-some cartographer had a sense of humor-toward the Roof of the World...

It was a deja vu of two years ago the other day at Miguel Loco's shoppe. It was but one day off the actually calendar date, if one wanted to split linear hairs. The joint was jumping and the roadways were packed. Someone asked if it was exclusive to the just past holiday. I shot Miguel Loco a flippant look before answering for him.

"July," I said simply, delivering the revelation. My friend smirked and the traveler I had spoken to looked confused. Neither was surprising.

Miguel Loco's long ago proclamation of milk and honey is very apt for July. On a single weekend day, a merchant can make what they might get in a week during the doldrums of January or February. This is when the marathons and bicycle races and festivals begin to really pick up steam. July is the intercourse to June's foreplay.

The ticks have gone away by July, but the mosquitoes appear, their ferocity dictated by the amount of runoff. We sit outdoors with insect repellent and bullets, ready for the little fuckers. The mosquitoes disappear in mid to late August, and it is the first omen of the impending autumn. For July, we fight and curse them, just to be outside in summer's warm embrace.

July is hot sun and monsoon. Almost nightly chimeneas or bonfires and margaritas with the neighbors. Dining alfresco and cooking anything you can with fire. Nights warm enough you can lay on the bare ground to look up at the stars, but cool enough you don't need a fan when trying to sleep. Everything is in full green and full bloom come July.

I love July for all of these reasons. I hate it for how crowded it can be, whether on a town street during a weekday or out on a trail. At my professional obligations, there's barely a moment to catch my breath, and I come home either torn and tired and murdered or really wanting a cocktail. Sometimes both. I catch myself mourning the sometimes agonizing quiet of deep winter.

Be that as it may, we embrace this stretch of days that have been named July and ride that snake's tale for all it's worth. It is indeed milk and honey in its halcyon countenance. The feasting time. We hold on so tightly, because like water spilling through closed fingers, it is gone too quickly, leaving just bittersweet memories to savored until the same stretch of days next year.


  1. The only thing I like about July is that I was born one year in the month of July.
    But that was a very long time ago...

    1. Oh, hush now. You're like a year younger than I and I am still in my prime.

  2. Yes. July is The month of summer, here in the northern Rockies. The month of promise that you don't have to take more than a good fleece on a camping trip.....unless. That taking the grandkids up to a lake you know, 4wd drive the last mile, promising warm water...watching the shiver and turn blue.
    We have the tourists too....wandering around, standing outside my gate, pointing. Remarking how 'quaint' my place is, blue haired women, patting me on my arm and walking on.
    On the other hand, it's places on the rivers, casting to trout feeding in 6 inches of water. It's my neighbor washing her truck at 11am, pink tank...nevermind.
    Anyway, I like July as much, it's the frenzy of summer. One just finds as one moves on in years, that it's spectator sport. Enjoy it now.

    1. Oh, I live in a National Historic Landmark district, I know all about having a house/town ogled for being quaint. People walking in the middle of the street like it's Disneyland.

      The water was fairly warm up Dry Gulch. Still nothing I'd go swimming in without a wet suit. A neighbor of mine was up your way and caught an impressively large trout. Of course, he comes up to my ankle, so the thing looked like a whale next him by way of comparison.

  3. I was born in the true deep of Summer so one might think I like this season. Wrong. I have no desire to spend months sweating, have my brain fried by that wretched nuclear orb, or toss and turn every night when I just so want to feel cool, fresh air instead of the hot breath of Hell...

    1. January's great for the snowshoeing, July is good for the grilling. Both have their place. That's balance.

      Of course, I also live at ninety-one sixty, and that's a bit higher up than yourself...;)

  4. Further from those pesky Gates for sure...lucky you.
    Btw...Great photo. What a beautiful day.