Ostomy Memories of the Desert


THE DESERT IS A DRY, BAKED, ARID PLACE. It’s desolate and deserted; that’s how it got its name. Yet there is a lot going on there. Many creatures are born and die there, the fauna of the desert, tiny burrowers like the kangaroo rat and predator reptiles like the rattlesnake. The flora may not resemble a rainforest, or even your back yard, but it is alive there, the kind that stores water like the saguaro cactus; sage brush; desert holly, which must be handled with care lest its sharp needle-edged leaves cut you up and, as I discovered, it hurts for awhile afterward. The sparseness of vegetation and water makes it difficult for the earth to absorb solar radiation, so the ground can’t conserve heat at night, causing significant decreases in temperature during nighttime hours. The few humans who are attracted to the desert can be as ornery and inhospitable as the desert itself. They don’t require the common creature comforts available in the city, the convenience stores and the concrete, the constant pressure and expense of accumulation, the cable TV. But the desert has its wonders, and wandering around in it can provide a kind of lonely peace and self-satisfaction available nowhere else.


Hello HenryM.

Thanks for this descriptive post  - it sounds a little like my mind at times when "wandering around in it can provide a kind of lonely peace and self-satisfaction available nowhere else".

Best wishes


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The song "I've Been to the Desert on a Horse with No Name" popped into my head right away as I read your post. LOL

I have never been to a desert...it would be wonderful to see.

Reply to Anonymous

I've never been to a desert or ocean. I did see some mountains once when I was little but don't remember them much.

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Reply to AlexT

That blew me away! I cannot imagine not seeing the ocean. When I lived in NC, we were 3 hours from the ocean and I was claustrophobic! Once I moved from there to Rhode Island, I was fine again.

Staying Hydrated with an Ostomy with LeeAnne Hayden | Hollister

We have cornfields and soybean fields, anything else is just fluff. I did see the Pacific once as the plane I was on had to take off that way and then turn, but I didn't see much.


Hi Henry...I lived in Arizona for 27 years - 5 of which were spent in Carefree, AZ, in the foothills of the desert....a lovely place ...we lived on the very edge of the desert. It was beautiful and amazing. I loved your description of the desert ...well, except for the part about the "dwellers" in the last couple of sentences....as a desert dweller myself, I must say I was blessed with all the modern conveniences life has to offer and a happy soul as well...everyone should visit the desert at least once....

Reply to Justbreathe

Good evening, thank you .... dwellers in my definition is a respectful point. I too have lived in the Arizona Sonora, Mohave, Mongolian, Peruvian, Australian, African, Middle Eastern and surprisingly the Antarctic Deserts for years for various aspects in scientific research for several universities, countries and governments. Deserts, as you appreciate, are incredible! Thank you for your communique. Sincerely, Dr. Thomas of Aerospace, Meteorology and Raptor Medicine.

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