A grandmother is a mother who has a second chance

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Dust Devils and Tacos

If you have ever lived in the dessert or visited for any length of time, you have seen dust devils. They are these cool little dust tornadoes that glide across the dessert, occassionally crossing the road. This usually happens when you're not paying attention and the windows are down and you wind up with your car, mouth and eyes full of dirt.

For me dust devils always conjure up a special memory. I moved to Tucson when I was 10 so my first class was 5th grade. We were out of the playground eating lunch. I had the ubiquitous paper sack with the traditional boloney sandwich, banana, and cookies. I put the sack on the ground to take a sip of milk when someone said "Look, there's a dust devil - it's a big one." And it was coming our way. I had never seen one before so I stared in awe. I noticed the other kids either moving or grabbing their stuff. But I didn't know why. Suddenly it came right toward me, blew up my dress (girls weren't allowed to wear pants to school in the 50's) and scooped up my lunch sack. I looked up and there was a slice of baloney, a piece of lettuce and two mustard-laden pieces of bread flying around like something out of the Wizard of Oz. The banana fell to earth rapidly as did the cookies. But the sandwich took flight.

Then I heard the snickers. The new kid lost her lunch and was covered in dirt. Oh, great. Off to a really good start. I think this was the same week that I was outed by one of the little Mexican kids in my class when I admitted that I didn't know what a taco was. They truly thought I was an alien.

But I love dust devils. They are graceful but strong, and always remind me of the adventure of moving to Tucson. And I now know to move out of the way and grab my belongings.

3 comments:

namaste said...

oh sandi *giggle* you sound as naive as i was. i've traveled to tuscon on biz once or twice. i've never seen one of these, but it sounds awesome.

ya know, as i sit here eating my bologna sandwich (seriously, i'm eating one now), i can't say for sure when i first learned what a taco was.

~m

Desert Diva said...

I think the dust devils are amazing, but like to watch them from far away. I've never come into direct contact with one.

Gee, what a disappointing introduction to school. The kids should have been nicer to you! :-(

Sometimes I refer to Las Cruces as the "Land of the Burrito." I love Mexican food, but have stopped eating it (except for the occasional shredded chicken tacos on steamed corn tortillas).

CHATTI PATTI said...

I'm like Desert, I've seen them from afar, never near. Dust or no dust, they scare me!!