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Tuesday, August 10, 2010

August Heat

When I was a kid, I had a collection of my parents' high school textbooks. My favorites were the literature books, and today I am trying to recall a creepy short story entitled "August Heat". If I remember correctly, it was about a guy taking  a walk on a steamy hot August day, and meeting a tombstone maker working on a tombstone....which turned out to be HIS stone, with that day's date listed as the death date. Scary!

What made me remember this today? Taking my dog Ginger for a walk this morning. It was 7:30am and the temperature was already above 90F. With high humidity to go with it every thing looked steamy, like a sauna. I was drenched in sweat after 30 minutes. Ugh. It's enough to make you feel like you're about to die! Hence the story popping into my mind.

Oh, August, I have such a love hate relationship with you! On the one hand, I always seem to be able to take a vacation in August. I am on vacation this week (hooray!) and last year I took a week off in August as well. I love that there are still lots of wonderful things to buy at the farmer's market. I went yesterday and bought corn, tomatoes, watermelon, a big basket of peaches (I plan to freeze some), zucchini, eggplant, peas, okra, peppers and squash. I met an 81 year old potter named Elijah and admired his pottery. I went to Harvest Moon Soapworks and bought lavender bath salts (with the cutest little wooden scoop!) lavender soap, sage soap, dried rosebuds and petals, and a mortar and pestle made of stone. I got the best peach ice cream cone for lunch, and also bought organic milk and eggs. August is just made for rambling around having those kinds of adventures. I plan to go to the public library today and spend an afternoon browsing the shelves. August is also made for summer reading and library books.

BUT, there is another side to August. I live in South Carolina, and the heat makes everyone want to hibernate inside with the a/c cranked up and the blinds drawn. I haven't worn makeup to work in three months (because I'll just sweat it off getting into my car!) Everyone is cranky. Doing anything outside for 10 minutes or more leaves one soaked with sweat. Add to the fun that this has been a hotter than normal summer all up and down the east coast, including here.

The other thing I dislike about this month is the fact that the days are getting shorter already. I always feel like I haven't had enough summer yet when it starts to get dark noticeably earlier. Of course, I haven't had much summer....I've been hiding inside to escape the heat!

Then there is the "back to school" feeling. I know some people love this time of year, the shopping for school supplies, the feeling of new beginnings.........but for me the "new beginnings" feeling happens in the early spring, not now. I just have a kind of "back to school/work/responsibilities" feeling!

Well, I'm off to enjoy the day, despite the August Heat! This vacation was very needed, and I still have the rest of the week to enjoy. Life is good right now!

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