I knew I was in the desert when I smelled it. I rolled down my window to feel the wind blow cool gusts on my sun heated skin and a smell filled my nose and poured into my lungs. It was a smell I don’t remember smelling specifically it’s like that moment when you smell the earth and rain fuze into a scent after the first rainfall. There’s that smell, but you don’t really remember it until it lifts from the earth and floats in the air, into your nose.
I never noticed it when I was living in Prescott but now that I visit it I can’t imagine leaving that smell; I just want to keep it in a jar and have it forever. But I know I can’t be here forever and I know it’s good I left. I know I have to let myself sink into the arms if the unknown and be craddleded by my curiosity. But it’s hard to do all of that. It’s hard to leave such security and drift into the unknown, but that change and challenge is what creates experiences and new perspectives. A quick visit to Prescott has created closure and is confirming the reasons why I left, but it is good it’s quick otherwise the appeal of security would be too tempting.
While I’m here I am reminded of the beauty of the desert and the beauty of the people that the desert draws. The sunsets demand attention every evening, the cicadas hum loudly through the day, the monsoon clouds rip through the radiant blue sky and the smell. The first night I arrived the desert greeted me with its familiar smell, and with silhouetted mountains and the people greeted me with laughter, good beer and good food. It was as if I never left this place.