I realized this morning that there are only five weeks of summer left. Not official summer, of course, but summer vacation summer.
What's amazing is that we've passed summer's midpoint and I've yet to fall into my typical summer funk. Normally by now I'm in some state of despair. Mostly I blame it on air conditioning. By mid-July I am typically chilled through--my bones, my toes, my brain, my soul. I feel stuck inside, claustrophobic, in need of fresh air and birdsong, but a quick walk to the mailbox is enough to convince me that the direct July sun isn't my friend either. So I stay inside and wither.
But not this year, baby. This summer has been a brand new ballgame. Why? Two words: screened porch. I eat breakfast, lunch and dinner on my porch. When I get a chance to take a break from chores and herding boys, I take it on the porch. When the AC gets to be too much, I thaw out on the porch. This is the most time I've spent outside in summer since I was a camp counselor at Belton Lake in 1984.
The other thing that has made this summer bearable is an almost completely open schedule. In the past I've signed Jack up for three or four day camps, which means loads of driving hither and yon, and have also hired a babysitter for a few afternoons a week so I could write. Weirdly, none of this seemed to buy me much time in the long run, mostly because I was spending most of my waking moments coordinating chores and errands and carpools and picking up and dropping off the babysitter and dropping off and picking up Jack ...
This summer: one camp. That's it. Jack doesn't mind. He likes being able to sit around all morning and then going to the pool in the afternoon. We all like it. I like it especially now that Will is swimming. I still get in the water and play with Will, but he's pretty happy just doing his own thing a lot of the time. I've even sat at a table and read a magazine a time or two.
There have been hectic days, and I still feel oddly routine-less. But I don't feel depressed. I go through mild to moderate depressions from time to time, and summer is one of the worst times (February is the other). I do have five weeks to get through, so it's possible that I'll still get hit by the funk. But I have my fingers crossed that this summer the black dog will pass me by.
This morning I went to the Farmers' Market at eight, thinking I'd beat the crowds. I didn't. It wasn't quite as crowded as it is at ten, but there were a lot more people than I'd expected. Nonetheless, I felt like I could take my time and explore a little more. I bought peaches and grapes, basil plants, two kinds of potatoes, corn, carrots and tomatoes (we have lots of tomatoes on the vines, but they're all green). And I bought a pound of green beans, which I blanched and froze when I got home. My first attempt at food preservation! We won't starve this winter, boys, no we won't.
3 hours ago