The end of August is closer to us now than the beginning. But my (our) summer experience has only just swung into full-on summertime mode. July was rainy and cool, disheartening for the simple reason that we all felt let down by Summertime, that magical goddess of sun-browned shoulders, the smell of coconut, copious amounts of watermelon and visits to our beloved Queen’s Bay Beach. Gardens were sluggish. Flowers bloomed with sighs of lackadaisical vigour. Rain felt so wrong.
As August started to wax into existence, the weather got hotter. The sun shone as if she owned the sky. No clouds were seen. I know it’s that deep hotness of summertime when brown spots appear on my lawn. That lush greenness of June fades and heat takes over. I adore it. The waters of Kootenay Lake finally became indulgent. Swimming to the dock isn’t a matter of counting down from three and gasping out loud when finally plunging into the water, biting that icy bullet. Going in the lake is more of a lazy meander, as the heat from the sun tightens the skin of our arms and back; we seek that liquid relief. That coolness of the water feels right; it’s not a grasping bite but a revitalizing thirst-quencher.
The sounds too. Those distant motors, whether boat, motorcycle or mower. Shouts of people, children laughing, wasps and bees humming, squirrels barking furious orders to passing dogs below… I can always nap outside in the summertime. Give me a hammock, a beach blanket or a recliner and I will snooze for hours…… The sounds of summer are hypnotic and meditative. The air has a heavier manner, breathing feels richer. Am I crazy or is summer really this good? I hear people talk of despising the heat and I am so confused. I love most of all not having to deal with too many clothes. No toques and pants and scarves and mittens. A pair of shorts and a tank top, bathing suit handy, flip-flops on and I am good to go. No make-up most days either. I have found love for my bare face, tinged slightly brown.
The end of August brings bittersweet sorrow. We have to let go of agenda-less days, we need to prepare for school mornings and lunches and routine. Yet, the weather often stays brilliant well into September. I have been known to swim right to the end of the month. But still. Sadness of saying our goodbyes to summertime overshadows the beauty of the coming fall.
I embrace all the seasons, though. I think it helps us appreciate what we love the most about our favourite part of the year. For some it isn’t summer. But for me, it is.