Hundreds of butterflies flitted in and out of sight like short-lived punctuation marks in a stream of consciousness without beginning or end.
~ Haruki Murakami, 1Q84
If we were having coffee, tea, lemonade, water, wine, beer, or some other beverage, I would be delighted to see you again. Come on in! I’ve already put drinks and snacks out on the porch so let’s head out there to sit, sip, nosh, and chat. I’m so glad the coffee chats now include Fridays because I’m going to be busy tomorrow. I’ll tell you all about it once we’re settled in.
How are you? What have you been up to lately? Are you enjoying summer? Or winter (for those of you in the southern hemisphere)? Have you been keeping busy since our last chat or is your life slowing down to a seasonable pace? Have you been on any good walks or hikes? Taken a trip anywhere? Spent time with family and/or friends? Have you read any good books or seen any good films?
If we were having coffee or something else to drink, I would tell you that I put aside Nemesis by Isaac Asimov for now. I might pick it up again in a few weeks. Right now I have library books to read. Since the library books have a due date and I don’t feel in any hurry to finish Nemesis, I decided to start on the library books. I’m currently reading Life Class, and thoroughly enjoying it thus far.
As for films, M and I recently watched Big Eyes. In case you’re unfamiliar with it, it’s a movie about Margaret Keane whose paintings of big-eyed waif-like children were popular in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s. I think my parents had a couple of Keane prints. Or knock-offs of Keane prints. I remember something like them hanging in the living room. As for the movie, it wasn’t bad. I like the way Tim Burton made it look a little like pop-art (especially the grocery store scene which, of course, reminded me of Andy Warhol).
If we were having coffee, tea, water, or something a little stronger to drink, I would tell you that tomorrow I am taking a lesson in kayaking. Finally! I originally looked into a two-day kayak class, but decided that was more than I need right now. The two-day class involved learning to use a touring kayak which, it turns out, is not something I am interested in at this time. I didn’t realize until I started looking into classes that there are several different types of kayaks and, for me, the best one is either a recreational kayak or a sit-on-top kayak. The touring kayaks are for serious kayaking, and I’m not ready for serious kayaking. An hour or two on the water is enough.
I am looking forward to the class. It’s only 1.5 to 2 hours long, and I’ll learn the basics of paddling and getting in and out of the kayak. Since they use recreational and sit-on-top kayaks for this class, it’s perfect for me.
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that the scrounger’s garden is filled with butterflies lately. They are loving the lavender, the sage, and the butterfly bushes. The Eastern Tiger Swallowtail that I featured in my last Wordless Wednesday post was the first swallowtail butterfly I’ve seen in the scrounger’s garden since establishing it. I was thrilled. Believe it or not, I was more excited about the butterfly than I was about harvesting beans (green and wax), sugar snap peas, Swiss chard, broccoli, dill, and cucumbers on the same day. There was still a little excitement about the early harvest and the feast we had that night, but it didn’t eclipse the butterfly. (Side note: I originally thought to use the word “trump” rather than “eclipse,” but I don’t care much for that word lately.)
This is the first time we’ve grown sugar snap peas and I have to tell you, they are delicious! I knew they would be because I like sugar snap peas, but I was surprised at just how wonderful they are freshly picked. It wasn’t more than a few minutes from garden to table. We’ll be growing them again in the growing seasons to come.
If we were having coffee, tea, or something else to drink, I would tell you that we had quite a bit of rain this week which has been great for the gardens. It’s also been great for the grass and weeds. I could use a volunteer to come out and help me weed the gardens and mow the grass. As you know, it is important to keep the grass mowed near the house and on the trails in order to avoid ticks and snakes. My indoor work is getting behind, too, due to all the time I spend on outdoor work.
The storms that brought the rain also brought plenty of clouds, and sometimes the clouds would part enough to give us a glorious sunset. I’ve been down to the Point a few times to watch the show. It wasn’t always a successful trip, but oh, when it was, it was spectacular.
The black rat snakes were pretty active for a few weeks, but have gone back to wherever they hide when the weather gets hot. They are probably in the deep summer-green shade of the woods avoiding the heat of the sun. During cooler weather we see them sunning on the paths and driveway. We also have a group of crows meeting on our lawn throughout the day, combing it for whatever it is they are eating. I hope it’s Japanese beetles as those pests are now having their season. We will probably have to spray the roses and the dogwood this year. They decimated the dogwood last year, and I had leaves but no blooms (or bracts) this year. The roses in the scrounger’s garden were also picked clean of most of their leaves and did not bloom as well this year. (Side note: I know it is a “murder” of crows, but frankly, I find that unfair to the crows. Other terms for a group of crows includes a parcel, a horde, a muster, and a hover.)
If we were having coffee, I would tell you that summer is doing what summer always tries to do, and that’s seduce me with her beauty and her harvest of fresh fruits and vegetables. She sends butterflies and beautiful sunsets, Strawberry moons and Black-eyed Susans, sparkling dragonflies and days on the beach playing in the ocean’s waves, blueberries fresh off the bush and the cool green shade of the woods on a hot day, twinkling fireflies and the Milky Way stretched out across the night sky, daisies blooming in the rain garden and the quonk of the tree frogs in the evenings, laughing gulls flying over the meadows and the rustling of the rushes in the wind, and oh, a thousand other tricks, big and small, that summer utilizes to try to get me to like her. I call it the Summer Seduction, and have written about it pretty much every year since I started blogging way back in the ancient days before the word “blog” had even appeared on the scene. If interested, A summer embrace is last year’s post on this phenomenon.
If we were having coffee, tea, or some other beverage, I would say I have rambled on quite enough for one coffee chat. It’s your turn to tell me how it’s going in your life these days. Thank you so much for visiting and putting up with my babbling. Stay a while, if you like. We can go for a dip in the pool and later take a ride down to the Point to watch the sunset. It’s at 8:29 PM. I’ll probably call it a night shortly after that. My kayak lesson tomorrow is early which means I have to be up around sunrise if I want to arrive on time.
Be good, be kind, be loving. Just Be. 🙂
This post is in response to Part Time Monster’s #WeekendCoffeeShare. Thank you to Diana for hosting it. Also, a big congratulations for the #WeekendCoffeeShare being featured on WordPress’s Daily Post. So glad to see it being shared among the rest of the community! Put the kettle on, start the coffee maker, open a bottle of wine, or whatever your preference is, and join us. I’d love to hear all about what you were up to this week.