Thursday, August 21, 2014

Hot Fun in the Summertime

Trekking down to the river for the umpteenth time this summer, I already knew I'd end up wet, listening to the rushing water, enjoying the breeze.

Once there and sitting on a rock, legs submerged up to my shorts, the light bulb went off. I'm pulling a Frederick.

I'm dreading summer ending. It's why I'm at the river - different parts, but close enough to hear and experience - almost every day.

One of my all-time favorite children's books was written by Italian artist Leo Lionni and told the story of an eccentric field mouse and his chatty field mice friends.

Other mice industriously spend their summer gathering grain and nuts for winter, but not Frederick.

Oh, no, Frederick has other ideas. He sits on a rock and the other mice chide him for his laziness.

"I do work. I gather sun rays for the cold, dark winter days," he tells them.

Another day, he gathers colors for when winter is gray. Still another he gathers words because winter days are long and gray and he knows they'll run out of things to say.

That's precisely what I'm doing.

My windows have been open since April when I first threw them up (not even closing them while I was at the beach for a week) and since I don't use air conditioning, my electric bills are negligible this time of year.

Fruit ripens practically overnight on my dining room table and conversations waft up from the sidewalk below morning, noon and night.

I hear rain before I see it.

And on these daily walks down to the river, I sit on a rock like Frederick did and absorb the sound of the rapids, of bird calls, of children screaming in delight in the water, of a summer breeze through the trees.

Because one again, summer is flying by and I'm trying with everything I have to store up the warmth of the sun, the bright colors that will soon fade to Fall and the interesting and kind words I get from friends and strangers.

Summertime..and for me, the living just doesn't get any easier or more wonderful than this.

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