In the 1980s, on the Red Sea coast side of the Hejaz mountains in Saudi Arabia, I worked for four years and never saw rain.
It was always about chasing the water. Water was unpredictable and transient. Transient forbs and grasses were located differently every year, every season. Life depended on successful reading the landscape.
But this wasn’t the Empty Quarter.
The Empty Quarter was empty, why? Because no one could read the landscape, no one could read the water. No life. Empty.