Around my home town, you know it’s summer when a man down the road is mauled by a brown bear.This is the kind of news that shakes up the entire neighborhood. It’s time to awaken from our own inner-focused winter slumber and become keenly aware of our surroundings while taking our leisurely stroll down to the mailbox, deep in thought, eyes to the ground. Look up. Look around. Skip. Make noise. Sing. In other words, don’t be the source of a surprise encounter.
You know it’s summer when you find a robin’s nest in the four foot high spruce tree in the backyard. This is why we don’t have cats. I treasure the birds, and many of them build their nests low to the ground.
You know it’s summer when the hottest news of the day is: a new business is opening up in town…Avalanche Yogurt Shop. There’s nothing better than watching kids frantically slurping on fast-melting ice cream cones.
You know it’s summer when you hear the sounds of chainsaws and power tools winding their way through the wavering cottonwood stands (cottonwoods are really big weeds that grow into trees). People are either cutting back trees to regain the mountain views, adding on a new deck, or shoring up their dwindling firewood reserves. Hail to increased productivity.
And hail to laziness…like playing catch with Son #1 in the yard.
What I most love about summer is the chance to open up the greenhouse, pull out all the gardening tools and roll my hands around in the dirt. Seeing new green shoots peering up, just below the surface, hungry for the sun. Planting lettuce and kale and broccoli. Hovering over my perennials like an over-protective parent: poppies, columbine, forget-me-nots, fiddlehead. All of thine kingdom…Thou shalt thrive!
What I most love is re-greasing my bike chain, pumping up the tires (preparations are therapeutic), and riding six miles into town, with the wind at my back and the sun on my face. Ah…now this is pure heaven. Motor-less motion.
Time to hang up the snowshoes. Shove the sleds under the deck. Put the skis back into their dark closet.
And say hello to summer.