Presbyteriangal is feeling hot and humid in August and has done a hot and humid Friday Five.
“It’s August. An oppressively hot and humid month where many of us live.
I remember the Al Pacino movie though not much about the plot. Just that it was very, very hot. And he had giant sweat stains on his shirt.
As I pass through this year’s dog days in my felon ridden neighborhood (OK, just two housefuls. But isn’t that enough?), I am trying to focus on the blessings apparent around me, past and present, that I might not notice, necessarily. In that spirit, this week’s Friday Five goes thusly:
1. What is your sweetest summer memory from childhood? Did it involve watermelon or hand cranked ice cream? Or perhaps a teen summer romance. Which stands out for you?
My sweetest memories of summer in Texas were Girl Scout camp and Burger’s Lake, the swimming lake that the families in our neighborhood went to. We nearly always took a picnic to Burger’s Lake and I remember homemade ice cream or watermelon being a part of those trips. But most of all it included fried chicken from one of our neighbors. Mom didn’t like chicken and never made it, so when we went on a picnic it was always a treat when one of the neighboring moms made it.
I remember especially going to Canoe camp one year in which we spent almost all waking hours on the water. My hair was bleached almost white by the time I came home and it is the only time I remember being tan in my life. It was the only way to beat the summer’s 100+ temps in Texas. This was all before air conditioning.
My remembrance of summers in Ft. Worth was that they were incredibly hot—too hot to go barefoot on asphalt because it would stick to your feet and leave a blister. But it was a dry heat and that you really could cook an egg on the hood of the car.
I was back in TX just a week ago for 105+ weather and found it much easier to endure than the 90+ humid stuff we get in NY.
2. Describe your all time favorite piece of summer clothing. The one thing you could put on in the summer that would seem to insure a cooler, more excellent day.
Cotton! If I can wear lightweight cotton, whether it is a dress or a skirt, pants or a blouse, it needs to be lightweight and light colored cotton. I have had problems during the summer with vestments since I sweat (No, Virginia, I do NOT perspire.) so heavily during summers. Just this spring one of my members made me an alb of tropical wool that looks wonderful and is remarkably cool. I am so thankful.
3. What summer food fills your mouth with delight and whose flavor stays happily with you long after eaten?
TOMATOES! I love the summer because of homegrown tomatoes and a wonderful cold, fresh basil, tomato, balsamic vinegar and garlic sauce that I put over hot homemade pasta. Delish! By the end of winter I am almost frantic for the taste of a Real tomato.
I also love the summer fruit—melons, peaches and of course strawberries. When I served a church in CA I was in the strawberry capital. By February you could smell the berries on the air. But in the long run, I prefer the locally grown NY berries that are small but ohhh so sweet.
4. Tell us about the summer vacation or holiday that holds your dearest memory.
The neatest vacation I have had was a couple of weeks in MT fly fishing with another avid woman fly fisher. I caught so many big fish and the biggest fish I have ever caught.
I am hoping that the vacation I will be taking this year will provide a similar experience. We are taking the Canadian Railway from Toronto to Vancouver in a couple of weeks. It is almost like a cruise but without the sun. Three days of watching the country pass by with wonderful food and drinks and plenty of time to read. Sounds like heaven.
5. Have you had any experience(s) this summer that has drawn you closer to God or perhaps shown you His wonder in a new way?
I had a wonderful moment today. A member came into my office and asked how to pray. It was such a simple request and asked with such candor and openness that it allowed for some significant moment of God being shared. This doesn’t happen often enough in my experience. But it happens often enough to keep my hopes up. Thank you, Jesus.
Bonus question: When it is really hot, humid and uncomfortable, what do you do to refresh and renew body and spirit?
There are several things that I try. But there are some days that nothing works and like a good catholic, I offer them up