I was chatting with the cheerful salesperson at the garden center the other day, while perusing the planters.
My default is blue, deep cobalt blue. I was hovering in the blue section, but eyeing the beautiful greens
and purples. She said to me, "you can never go wrong with blue in the garden, all flowers look good in
I agree. In the hot haze of summer blue is cool and refreshing to look at, and to be around in general.
Here in the midwest, the hot humid days are settling in with the fireflies and the crickets at night.
Yesterday in particular was a 3 shower, bad hair day. I went to a local food festival with some family
and friends. As we walked and talked and drank and ate, I noticed that the connections people were making
were different then on dry days, in an unexpected way.
We walked into a crowded bar without any air-conditioning, and everyone was gathered around the bar and
little tables huddled together, sweating and offering t-shirt sleeves to wipe a forehead on. We americans who covet
our space get closer when it's 90 degrees with 100% humidity? Hmm. So we came up with an app idea as
my daughter was fanning herself with her iPhone; a picture of an old fan whirring-just to make you think air is blowing
on you. Maybe it was the Moscow Mule, but in the moment the fan thing was funny.
The bottom line is that summer is summer and cliches exist for a reason. I am an Autumn/Winter lover. I get the deep summer blues and yearn for ice skating and sparkly snow, sweaters, and cozying up on the sofa with the newspaper on a Sunday afternoon in January.
Blue is my favorite color in summer. What's your favorite color of the season?
p.s. The fan app already exists. My daughter told me this morning.
wanderlust: a very strong impulse or desire to travel the world
I learned to travel when I was very young. My nana lived in Omaha, Nebraska. I went to visit her regularly- and boarded a
plane alone when I was in second grade. In those days I was
greeted by a friendly air hostess with a deck of cards, a winged
pin, and a seat next to hers.
My Nana Evelyn was widowed at a young age. When the children were grown, she decided to sell the family business and travel the world. She had a treasure box in her apartment filled with shiny and mysterious things she collected from Asia, South America, Europe, and many other faraway lands. I knew then I wanted to see and experience the world.
Last summer I had the good fortune to travel to Spain and France with a few friends. After a wine tasting (and only a few sips
of wine), I walked out and fell into a well, only about 3 feet deep. I twisted my knee, and, unfortunately, train travel became
impossible with a rolling suitcase. In the train station on our way to Aix-en-Provence I decided to let go of half of the contents
in my bag. By letting go I mean making a pile of clothes and setting them next to the trash can in the train station.
My nana always said, pack only what you need, and put tissue paper in between your clothing so it doesn't wrinkle. Clearly,
she traveled back in the day when microfibers had not been invented yet, and people dressed up to fly.
I am grateful, to say the least, to have learned to appreciate her ability to go beyond the boundaries of everyday life.
She was a wonderful model. I miss her, but every time I set out on an adventure, I think of Nana-packing her bag,
and saying, "eh, I don't need to take this, it will be a nuisance."
"Traveling leaves you speechless, and turns you into a storyteller" ~Battura
When I studied art history so many years ago, I was captivated by the dutch and flemish paintings – the luminous figures resting at the front of the canvas against the darkest ground. Their watery blue eyes tenderly looking over and beyond
me. Now, I am much more interested in the juxtaposition of these paintings with others.
I am reminded of world and national events this past week, and that it is my 26th wedding anniversary today. I begin to to notice what is different, what is the same, and how I am impacted by subtle, and not so subtle changes, like the paintings
beside each other.
A few years ago I saw "The Girl with the Pearl Earring" at The Frick Museum
in New York. This was the first time I had seen the painting close up. She is beautiful, elegant, and I wanted to reach out and touch her face.
I have been wondering for a few days why I am thinking about paintings and current events simultaneously. I am so struck by the people, and their stories, and how I want to celebrate each and every one of their triumphs, including my own – being married for 26 years takes a lot of love, and grit, and grace.
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