Beautiful because the water temps here are perfect for swimming and summer has arrived in all its steamy glory. Sunrises and sunsets, when thunderstorms aren’t hulking overhead, are glorious. I love to read my newspaper and have breakfast on the deck when it’s still cool enough to enjoy. It’s a wonderful time of year. We had a magnificent super moon a week back that made the moonrises even more spectacular than usual, spilling rivers of silvery twinkling light across the sea to my feet as gentle waves lapped at my ankles. What’s not to love about living by the sea? (We won’t discuss hurricanes here, please.)
Busy because in less than a week, I head north to our family camp in New Hampshire. When I tell people I’m spending five weeks on an island, they get impressions of grandeur. I wish! Years ago when my parents bought our little island, my dad built a fourteen foot square cabin that was supposed to be our temporary digs until he built a bigger one on the bluff looking down the lake. Then he got his first tax bill. Since New Hampshire doesn’t tax anything else, they soak you on the real estate. Our temporary cabin became the permanent structure. Today, even if we had the wherewithal to build something with bedrooms and indoor plumbing, we’d run into more modern building restrictions that make it impossible. There is nowhere on our tiny island that’s far enough from shore to get a building permit. So, we’re grandfathered in to the little cabin that my dad eventually tacked a bit of kitchen onto and stretched a porch along the front. We treat it like our clubhouse and everyone sleeps in tents. And, because I’ll basically be living in a tent for five weeks, anything I need to have, I take with me. It’s another reason I drive a CR-V – that and the dog. So, I’ve been busy gathering up the things I’ll need, the stuff I want and the gear I can’t live without. Did I mention there is no telephone or TV. I do have a laptop so I take reruns of my favorite programs on DVD to watch when I feel like watching something mindless instead of reading. And I visit my cell service provider to pay for two months of internet service on a little gadget designed to create a hotspot. Which it sometimes does. Just often enough to stay in touch via email and FB.
Rewarding because on my birthday my mailbox, which usually yields only junk mail and the occasional bill from entities that still live in the dark ages and can’t send requests for remuneration via email, held a bounty of riches. There was a contract, signed and accompanied by an advance check from my new publisher. A number of lovely birthday greetings and two packages from my kids. It was a most satisfying day.
And heartbreaking because 19 brave firefighters lost their lives in Arizona fighting a wildfire suspected to have been started by lightning. These were hotshot firefighters, specially trained. The best. And yet something happened to take their lives. I suspect that investigations will someday give us answers, but in the meantime, this is the single biggest loss of firemen since 9/11, the largest loss fighting a wildfire since 1933. And there are so many to mourn their loss. Parents, wives, children. An entire town. God bless them all.