Channeling Thoreau

Henry David Thoreau said that an early-morning walk is a blessing for the whole day. As always, he was right. My eyes popped open around 6:30 this morning (oh, the luxury of summers off without an alarm clock chirping before 6), and so I decided to take a walk before another hot, humid day trapped me inside by the air conditioner.  Today’s jaunt wasn’t about lowering my cholesterol or trimming my waistline, though I did pick up the pace a few times; no, I just meandered through the sidewalks of one of the nearby seashore towns, up to the boardwalk, and down to the ocean, where I promptly took off my flip flops and plunked my toes in the sea.  Icy!  Wonderful!

Take a look at the flowers and seaside houses I spotted along the way….

IMG_1761

IMG_1764

img_1763.jpg

The perfect way to begin this Friday. So how better to end it than with one firecracker of a storm. You know the kind. Big jagged streaks of lightning in the sky, loud claps of thunder that send a cat scurrying under the bed (well, Mimi did anyway), and torrential rains that wash the street clean and leave deep soppy puddles in the grass.  One of summer’s best bits.  I’m sure Thoreau would agree.  Don’t you?

August Afternoon with Friends in their Garden

Well, August sure started off as August will do. Hot, sticky air all morning, a quick torrential downpour mid-afternoon, and now warm, balmy breezes this evening as I sit down to write. I could probably use a little bit of air-conditioning, but I am enjoying the scents of a summer night wafting through the window-screen above my desk.

I had a swell day with my friends (and their family of cats, dogs, and chickens!), catching up on our summer shenanigans and then walking around their beautiful acreage.  Their months and months of toil, sweat, and bleeding fingers have produced bountiful gardens of flowers, vegetables, and fruits.  Heirloom tomatoes, wildflowers, figs, peppers, jalapenos, eggplant, zucchini, cucumbers, sunflowers, you name it.  We plucked a few cherry tomatoes from the vine and popped them in our mouths like candy…except oh so much better.  Tim proudly showed me the two large watermelons that have appeared nestled underneath a cluster of vines. They have a bit longer to go before they are ready for picking, but I have a feeling they will be worth the wait.

Always the consummate hosts, they sent me packing with the best kind of gift bag: several heirloom tomatoes I can’t wait to bite into, cucumbers, and a bouquet of fresh basil, which is resting in a vase of water on my kitchen counter. Boy, does that smell delicious. I am already dreaming up the dishes I can make with all of these fresh homegrown goodies.

A summer day filled with simple pleasures is often the best kind, don’t you think?

IMG_1755
Sunflowers look like little happy, giggling faces to me. (Maybe I watched too much Magic Garden as a child in the 70s.)
IMG_1751
An apple tree amidst the wildflowers.

IMG_1756IMG_1746

 

Farewell, Sweet July

Hello! I am relishing a quiet, peaceful last morning of July here at home. I debated going to the beach, then thought I might run to Target and Wegman’s, stared glumly at the World Literature textbook I need to start re-reading and planning for September’s classes. In the end, the nicest choice won out: reading some poetry on my balcony and listening to the choir of birds chirping in-tune, out of tune, perching quickly on and off the railing to say hi.

Have you read Mary Oliver? She writes with such an observant, poignant, grateful eye. Take a look at this nugget from “Messenger”:

My work is loving the world./Here the sunflowers, there the hummingbird–/equal seekers of sweetness.

Ah, I love that. Imagine if we were all “equal seekers of sweetness”?

I can’t wait to see what sweet simple joys August brings. Thank you, July, and farewell.

IMG_1736
Mimi wishes I would open the screen door and let her out on the balcony.

A Simple Life…

Hello! Welcome to my new blog, where I hope to journal the simple, wondrous, beautiful things I come upon day to day. You know, like a delicious book or new vinyl record, a bright orange flower, rainy afternoon, line of poetry, or morning walk by the sea.

Thanks for following along….

Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

cropped-cannon-beach-or3.jpg