the calima

The calima, i guess is a kind of a sand storm. That’s my understanding of it. It’s a phenomenon that takes place in the Canary Islands and people love to talk about it. They  do. About how to spot it, why it happens and when. So I became fascinated by it too. It usually happens during the winter, by the way. But that hasn’t stopped people finding it during the summer too. I found myself Googling it and slipping the term into conversation every now and again. I don’t know whether my plan was to impress the person I was speaking to or to impress myself with my new found knowledge.

During the calima it is hot and dry and visibility is reduced. The first time I “saw” it was at night looking at a street light and it looked fuzzy. Like a dream, like it’s there, but not quite. A fuzzy dream.

I’m one month in and one month to go for my time in Gran Canaria. Here, it feels like a dream, like I’m here, but not quite. Australia is too distant to even care about, and Sanlucar, despite the fact that I was there for seven months, now seems like a one-week holiday. I can only remember certain things like going for ice-cream with Fernando in the plaza, watching Scrubs in Spanish, crying with my head on the table when my housemate left, and walking home alone at 5 in the morning with my boots tapping against the concrete and thinking about how I sounded like a cowboy.

So the calima is real, although to be fair stoners love talking about shit like this. Whether it’s the calima, the way the earth spins or why, scientifically, you need to first extract the THC into oil or butter when you’re making pot brownies or cookies. They can remember that, but they can’t remember telling you that story about that time they went to Australia and their van broke down.

The calima is a dust storm carrying sand from the Sahara. So why do stoners make it sound so complicated?

I need to pee. I am sick of having a bladder infection. Every doctor says that it’s so common, so why does no one ever talk about it? All I want to do is talk to someone about it, and tell them how fucking annoying it is to want to pee every three seconds. This morning, I went, finished washing my hands, then went back to sit on the toilet for another dribbley round two. ‘This sucks,’ I thought.

The doctor was a large Cuban man with a strong Cuban accent, and the reception lady was a German lady who lives in Mogan. She was as sweet as fucking pie. All I can think about it how much I want to sit on that toilet seat. I wonder if the doctor or German sweet as fucking pie reception lady ever think about the Calima. Maybe I should have brought it up in conversation. Maybe it was rude not to? Maybe I’ll drop by there casually tomorrow and have a word or two with them about it. Maybe my bladder infections revolve around the calima. Maybe that’s what they will tell me.

Puerto de Mogan often reminds me of the movie Dirty Dancing, but without the dancing and Patrick Swayze is already Dead. Or, at the very least, like that spin-off series of Saved by the Bell where the characters went to work in a resort over the summer and each of them had their own jobs. Well, I have my own job and the divers have theirs and so do the people working at the bars and restaurants, all for the tourists. And there’s a bit of sexiness too, and some drama, but like I said, no Patrick Swayze. Occasionally we have a dance I suppose. I wonder if it’s ok to dance during the calima? Sounds like you’re just begging for a bladder infection. Or a dance with Patrick Swayze.


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