The first one was shared with me by an Of Woods and Words fan:
"The first week of August hangs at the very top of summer, the top of the live-long year, like the highest seat of a Ferris wheel when it pauses in its turning. The weeks that come before are only a climb from balmy spring, and those that follow a drop to the chill of autumn, but the first week of August is motionless, and hot. It is curiously silent, too, with blank white dawns and glaring noons, and sunsets smeared with too much color." — Natalie Babbitt, Tuck Everlasting
The second quote I found while leafing through the latest issue of Minnesota Monthly:
"If the calendar were a family, August would be the great, bosomy aunt who turned down her first proposal and never again had the chance to marry. Here she comes, all smothering warmth, smelling of Aqua Net, and accompanied by a slight sense of sadness for opportunities missed." -- Shannon Olson.
I found the second quote last night when I'd finally put my feet up after an afternoon and evening of what some people might call homesteading and what I prefer to refer to as "fridge damage control." It all started when I went out to survey the gardens and came back with four more large zucchinis in my hands. Which brought our total of harvested zucchinis and yellow summer squash that had not been transformed into anything edible and delicious up to eight. EIGHT.
|Too much zucchini|
"Congratulations," Andy said as I worked to get the water bath canner up to a boil to seal four quarts of blueberry pie filling. "You've successfully made it 20 degrees warmer in the cabin than it is outside."
At the time, the thermometer in the kitchen said the indoor temp was 87, while the outdoor temp was down to 73. (Thanks for exaggerating, Andy.)
So yes, the first week of August is certainly hanging hot and heavy in these parts. Thank goodness there's a lake 20 paces or so from the sweltering stove to provide instant heat relief.
As for the sense of missed opportunities, already Andy and I are heading out to the gardens to survey both the successes and failures and saying those fateful words: "Next year . . ."
Next year? Already the kohlrabi and broccoli have had their time in the sun. The evenings are becoming noticeably shorter. The first load of winter firewood has been ordered. It won't be long until that autumn crispness starts to sneak into the air.
But for now I'm planning to enjoy this first week of August, with all its warmth, all its sunshine, and all its zucchini.