Monday, August 16, 2010

Taming the Lion of Summer

In Central Texas, summer roars like a lion. It prowls for the unaware: the un-sunscreened, un-hydrated, un-sheltered among us, looking for victims to scorch and wither with its breath. We start to feel like prey, perpetually seeking respite from the deadly heat.

Just a few days ago, we completed three years of living in Texas. As we have walked through three full circles around the sun at this latitude, I have learned to appreciate and savor the in-between seasons of spring and fall, and take cover during the more extreme times. During Texas summer, we pretty much just stay indoors like many of my friends do during Northern winter.

Except, as with the snows that require shoveling in bitterest winter, we still have to get outside for yard maintenance.

After a time or two mowing my yard in 100 degree heat, I begin to surrender to it. I accept that an hour of outside work includes a huge styrofoam cup of iced tea, a fully drenched set of clothing, and the sun's bronze kiss on my shoulders. Not to mention a mandatory shower (or at least a dip in the pool) at the end.

Then, while working in the yard this weekend, I sensed that the lion's heavy roar grows a little thin. It's still plenty hot and loud, but something about it just doesn't threaten like it did a week or two ago. I think the deadly heat we experience this week is the last of the really oppressive Texas summer. The heat will die down slowly over the next two months, but it is on its way out.

I rejoice at this sign, for it signals fall gardening, the start of school, and the arrival of my favorite, most productive season of year. I do my best writing and cooking in Fall.

Don't get me wrong, I am celebrating every day of summer. We have crammed in lots of library trips, Sonic happy hours, visits with friends and family, and an abundance of general (mostly happy) mayhem around this house. We have spent about 5 evenings a week out at Red Boot Ranch with the Captain's parents and their pool. We still have a week of the Captain's brother (#3: the Coach) and his sweet wife coming to enjoy the end of summer with us.

But one week from today, my firstborn begins third grade and my #2 Rooster starts kindergarten! I may shed a tear for this rite of passage, but to me it marks the beginning of Fall and a whole bunch of free time to get back to my own agenda. And precious one-on-one with the baby doll, of course.

Summer has been glorious. But I eagerly anticipate the imminent taming of the lion.

1 comment:

  1. I love what you say in your profile..."I write because when I try not to write, the words come anyway." :)

    I, too, am more of a fall kind of gal than a summer. We have had a truly wonderful summer, but I am indeed ready for the change in season.

    Thanks so much for all of your sweet comments at my blog. :) Oh, and we call our youngest daughter LuLu. I missed my sweet LuLu chatting with me during lunch today. Sigh. They grow so fast!


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