Blazing heat has finally graced us. Summer bequeathed us with several hot days this season but they were lenient when compared to today’s shriveling high temperatures that seem to touch my skin with more propinquity than Teflon on a pan.
I shall not dwell on it. I snub the desire to part the curtains long enough to see the waves rising off the asphalt. I will close the eyes to my drooping plants. I am satisfied to merrily type my thoughts into MS Word whilst the portable wails on its highest setting. (Yes, dear Readers, we do have AC. We have a huge unit taking up residence in the back yard. We also have a window unit in the upstairs bedroom. We have ceiling fans, portable fans and in a pinch a panting dog. It is THAT DAMN HOT here. It does not help that I am on day six of my flu, replete with a 100.2 fever.)
Yesterday was splendid. Better Half and I tackled the jungle that threatened to engulf our front yard. We weeded the beds, mowed the lawns and snipped the dead flower heads from the plants. Our neighbor, Mary, came and went, bringing us fresh garden corn in exchange for some patty pan squash. Mike and Linda waved hello as they hauled their daughter’s new bed from the back of his truck; she required a new one for college. Our wonderful senior couple across the street waved and chatted about squash recipes.
This is a very peaceful and gracious neighborhood. We have a charming mixture of young and old, blue and white collar, retired and student. We habitually joke about our “neighborhood security”; we have several law enforcement officials on our street alone and their patrol vehicles are parked in their driveways. The neighbors take much pride in their yards. Lovingly tended flowerbeds frame rolling green lawns. Many of our seniors utilize a lawn service to keep things neat (we use a service for our sloping back yard) and you will never see trash carelessly tossed along the road. Should the wind steal your garbage can lid, rest assured that obliging hands would tuck it snugly someplace near your front door. Solicitous folk take concern over your wellbeing; a casserole here, offered prayers there. I am oft reminded of the Walgreens “perfect” commercials.
We do have a vigorous supply of wildlife despite our proximity to the main drag. Deer, raccoons, opossum, foxes and rabbits all share space here. I rescued a rabbit kitten from our front bed only yesterday; his zealous squeals brought his mother charging to his rescue and I released him into her care. Our bird population thrives in the trees and now includes a hawk (we keep an eye on our Italian Greyhound.)
Today the street is vacant. The neighbors beat a hasty retreat into their homes, the animals sought shade and only postman Jim ventures out. A few songbirds warble in contrast to the hum of air conditioners. Even the cicadas, frogs and crickets remain still. Better Half naps in bed between laundry loads (I am far too feverish to walk up and down two flights of stairs to help him.) I cast an envious eye on our neighbor’s swimming pool before withdrawing further into the cool confines of my office.