Sunscreen, it always comes down to sunscreen, doesn't it? Other than forgetting to reapply it, I have no regrets.
There's no shame in planning an evening around a walk. Remember, today's 92 degrees felt like 98, which is why I took a quick two-mile walk this morning, threw in the towel and headed home to be productive.
Hired mouths needed brunch! Groceries needed purchasing! Dresses needed hemming! Restaurant reviews needed writing! Gardens needed watering! Newspapers needed reading! All this and more was accomplished.
But around 5:30, I ate an ice cream cone and started bargaining with myself.
A plan was in order. I'd only done a couple of miles, so my body was calling out for a longer walk once things cooled down and what could be more brilliant than putting a two-hour air conditioned movie break in the middle of a four-mile walk?
So I grabbed my hat and was out the door walking to Criterion by 5:45, at once blinded by the late afternoon sun and wilted by its intense heat. My brilliance in planning had not extended to considering the idiocy of walking two miles west at this hour.
But we persevere for art, do we not?
It hadn't been tough to select a movie after finding that a screwball romantic comedy directed by playwright Arthur Miller's daughter Rebecca and starring Greta Gerwig, Julianne Moore and Ethan Hawke was playing. "Maggie's Plan" had it all: dense, literate dialog, an academic setting and characters who are as drawn to each other's bodies as their minds.
But then first world problems kick in - can a woman conspire to return to his former wife a man who no longer woos her? - and it makes for a fascinating look at the sell-by dates on relationships, which we all know are rarely as happily-ever-after as we might pine for.
The walk home was practically perfect, the sun setting behind me and the worst of the heat replaced with breezes, a moon and briefly, a firefly landing on my arm.
I'd made a good choice with the movie. Only with women writing and directing do audiences get female characters saying things such as, "Am I so capable I don't deserve attention?"
I can assure you that rare is the capable woman who doesn't deserve attention. And even capable women forget their sunscreen occasionally.
But they at least have a plan to get out.