The single small cricket in my front yard is not as noisy tonight as it has been. It's chirp is now recognizable as a chirp, not a constant scream, and it is softer. Most likely the small crickets are like the larger ones, who chirp to attract a mate and once she shows up their chirps get softer. You can barely hear the chirps of a mated large cricket, though, and this small one is still pretty loud. But at least it isn't the former horrible racket that was driving me crazy. I wonder if I could buy swarms of female crickets to make sure all the males have mates? That's probably the only way I'd be guaranteed any peace and quiet around here for the rest of the warm season.
The sky has been rather hazy with smoke from the fires still burning across the valley. It made for a nice sunset last night, but I didn't even notice the sunset tonight. I was busy watering the back yard at dusk. I'm not sure all the shrubs are going to survive. The oleanders haven't a single blossom on then, and the lilac bush by the fence is looking very droopy. None of the others are at their best, either. I suppose I could be optimistic and assume that the death of some of them would be an advantage if the drought continues. There's be less stuff to water next summer. This place would look pretty ratty without its shrubs, though.
Now I don't hear the cricket in the font yard at all. There was some crackling of dry leaves a moment ago, and it sounded too loud to be one of the feral cats. It might have been a raccoon. I don't know if raccoons eat crickets. It might also have been a deer, in which case the cricket might have gotten stepped on. But I don't know what a deer would find to eat in this dessicated yard.
I'm going to find something cold to drink and sit on the back porch while the house cools a bit more. I probably ought to have given the place an hour or so of the air conditioner. If it's not cooler tomorrow I think I'll do so then. For now I'll just put up with it.