Summer is here.
It's supposed to be 87* here tomorrow, which, given the humidity of the past few days, will feel ten degrees warmer. I am not looking forward to driving back from the city in that.
But summer means it's time to lie on the couch in your underwear--or, if you're lucky enough to have a friend out in the country, to lie naked on the porch--drinking white wine or a good dry pale ale. It's time to read the Brother Cadfael books that take place during the mild and green summers of the twelfth century. It's time to wear the absolute bare minimum of clothes. It's time to dispense with sunscreen, sunburn and melanoma be damned, because it's just too damned hot.
By August I'll be sick of it, praying for winter. But now, I can look back on June nights when the Erstwhile Hub and I had just met and we slept and made love on his porch in the middle of nowhere, in air that was the temperature of blood. Now I can imagine going to one of the rivers that cut through the middle of the state and bathing in cold spring water with the sun beating down on my back. I can fantasize about taking three months off between now and August and lying like a turtle in the sun, redheadedness notwithstanding, and basking.
We're not past storm season yet. There are a few more weeks of blown sirens and wallclouds to get through, though this year has (as yet) been calmer than any in recent memory. And we're not yet to the point where the cicadas buzz all night long or the yarrow is blooming, filling the air with an indescribable, unmistakable smell.
A few years ago, during the first semester of nursing school, I went north a few hours to a waterfall. I waded in the river that formed it and swam in a pool under it, and felt the ancient calm air of the mountains surround me. The rivers here are younger, formed by tectonic shifts and sanctified by humans for millenia. The rivers north of us are older. They flow through beds cut by receding glaciers. The mountains are worn down to gentle rolling hills. These mountains could've changed the Rockies' diapers. The rivers here love humans, and heal them, and the spirits that live in the springs are gentle and kind and understanding. A few hours north, the spirits are ancient. They've seen everything. They no longer root for us or against us; they simply let us be.
I'm going back. Since it's summer.