Summertime Is Here…

Getting a little nostalgic for the day trips to see my sister (my brother had moved to the east coast by then) when she lived in western Michigan with this in the background: https://youtu.be/gSQAlfyaKyc. (“Summertime Is Here” by War.) The drive to St. Joseph-Benton Harbor is about two and a half hours from Lansing. Once at our destination, we’d stop at a store, grab supplies, and have a picnic at one of the state parks with a view of Lake Michigan spreading before us and the wind in the pines and the waves . While Dad tended the grill and Sister tended the place settings and related matters, I would take Fritz the Wonder Schnauzer for a walk along the beach. He didn’t like water, so that made it more of a drag when I wanted to dip my toes in the lake. Any time in nature with a dog is well-spent, though, even with a lack of cooperation.

Flash forward to present day. It’s quite hot and muggy already, more like July or August out there than mid-June. I limited this morning’s walk to 30 minutes. Oakley and I were both pretty uncomfortable by the time we returned to the car.

I don’t think we’ll go back to the forest preserve today. We’d have to go rather late, and I’m not comfortable going there after five or six by myself. Not as if we live in a high crime area, but safety first.

I have other plans this evening, though. When the sun moves to the front of the house and the raised bed lies in the shadows, I will finally unveil the raised bed and plant some seeds. I tried growing my own seedlings, but they all died. This week’s errands include a stop any place with plants. They will join their younger siblings after I pick them up. Water, cross fingers, hope for the best.

According to sources, I can still plant up to July 1. At the rate things are going, that might happen. Mothers’ Day weekend, the traditional last date for frost, brought it as well as snow not that far north of here. Then we had a heat wave, and then Memorial Day weekend brought another round of frost and freeze advisories along with measurable snow in Eau Claire, WI, about three hours to the northwest of me. And then came another heat wave.

Seeds will be planted, however. Period.

The other hallmark of the summer, Renaissance Faire, is up for grabs. We’re leaning towards a pass this year. We’re vaxxed, masked, but we aren’t going to relax until Dr. Fauci says it’s over. The one we go to is encouraging masking up, but there are always the few that impact the many. It’s why they’ve had do purse and diaper bag and backpack searches on entry for guns since Wiconsin became a concealed carry state despite signage all over the front gates and website forbidding guns.

We’ll be able to get back to the bookstore, though, shortly. Illinois is slated to reopen, masking encouraged, on June 11th. I’m going back to in person yoga then.

No matter what else happens, we’ll have some produce.

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