8.20.2010

Sibling Assignment #135: The Last Days of August

Silver Valley Girl gave the assignment this week.
"What do you like and what do you dislike about the month of August?"

I really dislike wishing my life away, but as the stifling heat had the dogs and cats sprawled out around the house even with the noisy air conditioner working overtime in the living room, I silently wished for September as I headed to a cool room for a nap.
 What do I dislike about August? I dislike camping when there is fire danger and you can't build a campfire. It is difficult when all the camping spots are taken with huckleberry pickers just there to pick their quota, yet parking in the prime camping spots. I dislike all the bugs that seem to come alive in August.
 What do I like about August?  I have always liked vacations away from home in August. It was a treat to travel to Orofino growing up and swim in the Clearwater in hot August. The many Oregon coast trips our family has taken always were planned in August and the cooler ocean air was a nice break after driving through the desert air of the Columbia Basin.
 I like vegetable gardening in August because you can eat green beans fresh off the vine, take a bite of a first tomato, and rub your hands on the dill and carry the aroma back to the house.  You can savor fresh peaches and have a salad fresh from the garden. I don't like flower gardening in August. The flowers work too hard just to stay alive.  Blooms are scarce, the leaves droop, and a few of the shade lovers just give up during August. Bouquets don't survive in the house after fighting the heat and lack of water.
 What I dislike about August is that realization that the projects I set aside for school to be completed in August may not get done. What I do like about August is reading time. It is a month of summer beach reads, paperbacks that smell of coconut oil, flashlight on late into the night while camping. It is going to the library and grabbing a stack of new books, taking afternoon time to just sit and read. It is reading for the sheer pleasure of reading. No highlighting, no sticky notes, no reflection... just reading for pleasure.
 I dislike cooking in August. It is hard to prepare comfort food when the oven heats up the house to match the thermometer reads ninety-two degrees outside. It is even hard to stand over a grill perfecting a steak when a heat wave is moving across the yard. August is a month for melon, cole slaw, soft ice cream cones at Sandy's, and cold sandwiches at noon. It is tomatoes and cucumbers in vinegar and ice cold lemonade. It is a beer in a frosty glass.

I will fill these last eleven days with weeding, inside organization projects, and a pile of new mysteries. I will squeeze in some naps, some trips back to my classroom, and art projects. I  yearn for cool nights, leaves turning, and the fall asters beginning to bloom.

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