From Lake to Playa in one Season

When we moved into our new neighborhood in April we were excited about the lake.  It was a big beautiful lake that stretched into the distance in a rather mysterious way, making it hard to tell just how big it was.  I made it a point to drive by it on the way to and from work, because it made me smile whenever I saw it.  And after dinner we would walk down to it to watch the birds. At the time the rain fed lake overflowed it bounds, creating a little creek that wound around the neighborhood.  Ducklings were born, tadpoles turned into tiny frogs, and we looked forward to a long summer enjoying the lake.

Then the wet Spring turned into a dry summer, and the lake began to shrink.  It is not strange for shallow lakes here to lose some of their water to evaporation in the heat, and we have a large lake nearby that drains periodically when the local aquafir is running a bit low, so we were not that worried.  After all, summer is hurricane season, surely we would soon have a big storm that would rain for days filling our little lake back up.

More birds came enjoying the shallow water and easy access to snails.  We even got some rare birds for the area like spoonbills.  It was still beautiful in its diminished state, and the birds made up for the lack of water.

Now it is almost fall,  Hurricane season will be over soon, and our lake is empty.  I continued to drive by to and from work, and we continued to walk down after dinner, but the snails and the birds are all gone, except for the occasional vulture.  The weeds are several feet tall in some areas, and where they do not grow the soil is dry and cracked like a desert.  Our neighbors seem unconcerned.  It has, as they point out, been a very dry summer.  We still have hope that our lake will fill back up, but if it doesn't, we will still have a nice playa to play in.