Tuesday, July 24, 2007
The other night I had to stop at the grocery store for some cat food and wine (life's essentials). I looked into the gleaming rows of fruits and vegetables in the produce section and wondered how long it had been since I was in that section of the store. Between our garden, the CSA and my weekly stop at the farmer's market for fruit, the produce department has become a strange and strangely sterile destination. I don't look forward to the winter days that will bring me back there on a regular basis.
This weekend brought milder, sunny weather and some of the pleasures of summer. I am making a list of these little pleasures and clinging to them, as work has reached a crescendo of stress that is making me lose my grip on things a little bit. And so, the nice, summery things:
+ Making vegetable stock from the peelings and stems and trimmings of our garden vegetables that I've been saving in our freezer all spring. I threw in the tomato skins and seeds from the plum tomatoes I was freezing (in defense against grocery aisles). It all made three wonderful-smelling quarts of stock.
+ Putting up tomatoes. I love squeezing out the globs of seeds.
+ Eating cantaloupe slices over the sink, with juice running down my chin.
+ Gobbling up HWWLLB's home-made salsa.
+ Riding bikes all over town with mys Sis. We rode a section of the greenway that I had been wondering about, but never seen.
We also took a walk at the Raulston Arboretum in Raleigh. A dragonfly was clinging to this stalk of ornamental millet as if for dear life, and hung around long enough to let me get a few shots of him:
When I get to noticing summer and how nice it is, it makes me fantasize about becoming a teacher, or some other profession where you get the summers off.
Two falls ago, HWWLLB and I went on a trip to Maine. In Maine, no matter what your job (except teachers, I guess), you take the winter off, because apparently it's too cold to go to work, and nobody's around, anyhow. It was fall, so everyone was planning their winter free time. I was having this conversation with a Mainer who asked me, what do you do in the winter? "We go to work," I answered. "Oh right, it's really hot where you live in the summer," she mused (boy, howdy). "So what do you do in the summer?" "We go to work," I answered. She looked dumbfounded. "When do you take off?" Um, I told her, you know, we get a couple weeks' vacation... her look of dumbfoundedness turned to pity.
When do we take off? I want to spend more time enjoying the summer!