Saturday, September 5, 2009

Saying Goodbye...


By Kirsten Scott

It's been a great summer, hasn't it? I don't know about you, but for me, summer is always a blissful time. We slow things down. We spend time at the lake with no internet and no agenda. We go for canoe rides and long walks. We see friends and let the kids play outside for hours while the grown-ups share an adult beverage and engage in the almost-forgotten art of finishing a sentence.


Oh, sure, I find things to complain about over the summer. This year, we experienced a week of absurdly hot weather -- two days of 106. Days when it was 95 degrees IN MY HOUSE. Horrible. You couldn't sleep. You couldn't exercise. All you could do was sit next to a fan and whimper. Or in my case, whine.

But really, we know summer is a good deal, even when it's miserably hot and humid. This summer, we dragged the family across the country for my cousin's wedding. Here we are, in the beautiful Finger Lakes of New York. We got to hang out with my extended family for the first time in years, and my kids got to play with their cousins and make memories that will last forever.


Of course, this is what summer's all about. Making memories. Doing the things you never make time for during the rest of the year. Jumping in an icy-cold lake just because it's there. Reading wonderful novels that make you forget your worries, and send you deep into someone else's life -- preferably, someone else's happily ever after.


But then comes Labor Day, and we have to pack it all in. We say goodbye to the canoe and the long sunny days and get ready for books and school and crisp fall air. We go back to the life we used to know. The sensible life. The life that pays the bills.

So what are you saying goodbye to this weekend? The lake house? Visits with family? Fireflies? Tell me all about it. You can cry on my shoulder for the cold beer on a warm night, and I'll tell you about the sprinklers and grilling fresh vegetables. And then we'll have one last weekend to do it all, before we welcome fall with open arms.

39 comments:

Virginia said...

Is he coming home with me!

Virginia said...

Well I guess I will be saying good bye to the longer days of summer! My long walks when the weather is nice. Spending time outside. I love the outside. I would rather stay outside and work in the yard or what ever instead of being in the house doing the housework. Of course if the weather stays pretty nice I can still go outside and do alot. I really hate it when they change the time and it gets dark by five in the afternoon.

Anna Campbell said...

Virginia, one chook for dinner - as a guest not the main course, I hope! Congratulations!

Kirsten, don't you look gorgeous in that photo!

I must say I always view the departure of winter with mixed feelings. I hate the stinking hot humidity we get here, particularly in January and February - although we've already had an unseasonally hot spell this year which doesn't bode well for full-on summer. But I love swimming in the pool and I love the longer days.

Pat Cochran said...

Good morning to all,

I dearly wish we could be saying
farewell to the gosh awful hot
weather we were dealt this summer!
No such luck, our summer lasts to
at least Halloween and sometimes
later. Most years our winter never
develops fully, with most days at
sweater or light jacket levels.
BTW, today's high was 85 degrees
which was practically a cold front
for us this summer!

Pat Cochran

Helen said...

Way to go Virginia have fun with him

Kirsten sounds like you had a fantastic Summer as Anna said things are starting warm up over here in Oz. We have had the warmest August on record so it looks like it is going to be a long hot summer with me sitting inside with the air con on and getting the TBR pile under control LOL.

I love winter it is my favourite time of the year and I will be sad to say goodbye to the nights that are cold and I can sleep really well eating great stews and casseroles and warm deserts,but I gotta say I love the summer fruits and all the salads. My favourite past time is reading and for me winter or summer is a great time to read.

We have been on a family picnic today for Fathers Day wihich is tomorrow here in Oz but I have to work so we made it today and the weather was glorious we all were in summer clothes no jumpers today but it wasn't too hot either.

Have Fun
Helen

Jane said...

Congrats on the GR, Virginia.

Hi Kirsten,
I've never been to the Finger Lakes, but have heard that it's beautiful up there. Like Virginia I'll be saying bye to the long days. I've noticed that it gets dark before 8 now. Soon it'll be dark at 4pm.

Kirsten said...

Good morning Virginia! An exciting day is in store for you with the man-about-town! Congratulations!

I am so with you on the shorter day -- I dread the dark days of winter when you wake up in the dark, go to work in the dark, glimpse a little light out of the window, and then go home in the dark. Wah. I hear in Alaska, the only way to survive the winter is to do what you said -- just go out in the dark. A good friend up there skis a lot in the dark. He says you've just got to get over the idea you can only get around outside when the sun's up.

Hmm. Good advice, but would take some getting used to.

Kirsten said...

Hi Anna! I have a bad habit of coming up with posts that are upside down for our southern hemisphere friends, don't I? Well thanks for the compliment -- obviously, my cousin is the real glamor-puss in the family. Can you believe her radiant smile? And she smiled like that ALL DAY LONG. Every picture of her is gorgeous. Me, I'm just along for the ride. :-)

I don't envy you the heat and humidity -- especially humidity. The weather was like that the first few days when we were in NY, and we were stunned by how unpleasant it is. Here in the Pacific NW, we get some hot days over the summer, but it's usually temperate, and never that humid. Yuck.

But your pool! I forgot about it. How lovely that must be in the summer to dive in everyday! I can hardly wait for it on your behalf! :-)

Kirsten said...

Oh Pat, my heart goes out to you. That hot weather is so wretched. I suppose everyone around you has air-conditioning, at least? Around here lots of us don't. It's sort of a badge of honor, a sign that you are an old-school Oregonian and don't have A/C. The newer houses usually have it.

Do you hole up in the house and just venture out in the early morning or late evening? How do you survive it?

Kirsten said...

Oh Helen, you just listed off a bunch of my favorite things about winter! The cool nights (windows open, blankets thick on the bed), the great comfort food -- yum! But I definitely love the summer berries, the fresh tomatoes, and though I'm sick of them by now, the zuchini (how the heck do you spell that?) fresh from the garden.

I hope you don't end up with huge fires this summer. Sounds like your hot spring doesn't bode well for that. They're just starting to get an enormous fire under control in California, and it isn't even the start of the real fire season down there. Yikes.

Sounds like a lovely Father's Day picnic! Enjoy the jumper-free weather! :-)

Kirsten said...

Hi Jane! Yes, the Finger Lakes are so beautiful. We rented a house on one of the lakes and swam every day. The water was cold but crystal clear -- which was a blessing, since I dove in the first day with my glasses on, and had to retrieve them from the bottom of the lake! :-)

I'm with you on the shorter days. I hate waking up in the dark. :-(

Joan said...

Well, I can say I won't miss canoeing...or swimming..or hiking as...that takes a lot of energy I don't EVER have :-)

But I will miss my flowers. I did a pretty darn good job with them this year including two HUGE lantanus out front that just thrived.

But....a lot of the ones in my pots are getting all scraggly, woody looking so I'll have to start pulling them up.

Sigh

And the long days definately. That's especially important when you don't get off work till 7pm. During winter I go to work IN the dark and come home IN the dark....

Feels like a vaccum...

Kirsten said...

Joanie! I remember hearing about your garden this summer and it sounded absolutely beautiful. I did a rather lousy job this year with the garden, but my son had his first ever vegetable garden, and he loved it.

But what exactly is a lantanus? Describe please? I can't find any good images on google.

Joan said...

Oops! It's the Roman coming out in me...

It's not lantanUS it's lantana....

They have small clusters of flowers that start out one color and fade into another. Mine start our yellow and fade to purple...

They've been attracting a lot of butterflies and occasional yellow jacket wasps...no hummingbirds or finches :-)

They got HUGE...actually too big for the area I put them in. I'm starting to trim them back in prep for fall when I REALLy have to pull them up.

limecello said...

Sister is here this weekend - and I'll be saying "bye" to her once it's over. I'll also be saying goodbye to my carefree days, because I'll begin teaching Street Law again soon...

Congrats on the GR, Virginia!

jo robertson said...

WTG, Virginia!!

Summers always remind me of my childhood when we slept out on the screen-in porch. I loved listening to the night noises and inhaling the unique summer smells.

We usually visited my grandma in Kentucky who didn't have indoor plumbing and the trips up the hill to the half-moon house were filled with fun and spookiness.

Now I like fall best, so I'm not really sad to say goodbye to summer and our horrible heat.

Anna Sugden said...

A very timely post, Kirsten, as it's now really obvious that the nights are drawing in. One of the real joys of summer is that it stays light until gone 10pm.

It's started to get cool in the evenings too - I must say that this was one of the hottest summers (well, 80+) I can remember and lovely though it is, I miss air con!

The pleasure now, is reaping the benefits of the hard work we put into our vegetable garden.

But, I will be sad to see all the lovely flowers dying off - it's been such a pleasure having our own garden and being able to have lots of colour!

I'm happy to say goodbye to the wasps, the slugs and the weeds. The cats will be sad to say goodbye to all the butterflies and other flying insects.

Anna Sugden said...

Oooh forgot to say, it's almost time to say hello to hockey LOL.

TerriOsburn said...

That picture is beautiful, Kirsten. Love the blog. I don't hardly any of the things I say I'm going to do at the start of summer. I have good intentions, but no follow through.

Usually I'm sad to see summer go because I know that means winter is closer and I really hate to be cold. But this year, I'm happy to see it go.

Even if you're not a kid in school, this time of year still feels like the beginning of something new. I need a new beginning and I'm feeling pretty good about this one. Thanks for giving something to feel good about today. :)

Becke Davis said...

Great blog! When I was young, I hated summer to end. Now that school isn't part of our lives, the end of summer doesn't hit me as hard. September is always a fun month - my daughter's birthday is in a few weeks and I usually get to see her for her big day, either in Cincinnati or Orlando.

This year, I'll be seeing her AND all my brothers and sisters in Chicago, as we meet to celebrate my mom's 80th birthday. So, I don't feel as if I'm saying good-bye to anything, more like I'm welcoming fall!

catslady said...

I'll be saying goodbye to playing bocce but saying hello to darts lol. We play at our American Legion. I much prefer the outside bocce than the inside darts but getting together with friends is the best part.

Pissenlit said...

Goodbye to longer days! It's less fun when the sun sets earlier. :(

Kate Carlisle said...

Kirsten, your lake photos are so beautiful and you look lovely!

The days are already getting shorter but it's still so hot in my area, I've got two fans aimed my way as I work. We've had fires again this season, bad ones, so I'll be glad to say goodbye to all that.

I guess I'm more of a cool weather girl, but it's still nice to be able to walk around the neighborhood at night and not have to bundle up, walk down to the beach at sunset and still see lots of people out playing, wear flip flops instead of shoes and heavy socks.

Oh, and Labor Day weekend means we get to go to our old friends' annual martini party. Always a good time!!

Congrats on nabbing the chook, Virginia! He might want to run through the sprinklers. ;-)

Pat Cochran said...

Kirsten,

New homes in Houston are built ONLY
WITH AC. Only the oldest of homes
(50+ years) do not have AC. Our home
which was built in 1969, thank God,
has AC! Wouldn't have purchased it if it did not!!

As to activity, you are so right. I only leave the house during the day to go out for the mail. Going
to various appointments is all
that takes me out. The rest of
the time, I blog, read, and (ugh)
do some housework!

Pat Cochran

Kirsten said...

Joanie, you've got my worst gardening weakness. I hate empty spaces, so I overplant and then have things too big for their spaces. But I figure moving things around is half the fun! I'll have to look up your flower. It sounds just lovely!

Kirsten said...

limecello, I got to see my sister this summer at the wedding and it was nice but so hard to say goodbye. I hope you had a great visit with your sis!

And I didn't realize you were teaching law -- what a great gig. I dreamed of being a law prof...

Kirsten said...

jo, those are just lovely memories. I dearly love the sounds of the crickets and peepers at night. That screened-in porch must have been terrific. I'm not sure it would be worth dealing with an outhouse, but the midnight walks were probably lovely too!

I admit, I'm not a big fan of the hot days, but I do love the slower pace in the summer. Maybe when my kids are older I'll be able to take it easier in the fall, too. HA! :-)

Enjoy those cool nights -- that's the best part of fall!

Kirsten said...

Anna, I think last week we lost 22 minutes of sunlight! I can't believe how quickly it seems to turn this time of year. I agree, it's hard to live without the AC - but we can feel very noble and long-suffering for not using the energy! :-)

So 80 is hot for you for the summer? It used to be that 90 was rare here in the summer, but now it seems to happen regularly. And we broke every kind of record for our week long heat wave. It's depressing to feel the effects of global warming so clearly!

Kirsten said...

Hey, Terri, thanks! I'm so glad you enjoyed the blog. We had such a lovely summer, it's hard to see it end. I love the tradition of the big Labor Day party. We're having our block party on Monday and I can't wait for that. It's nice to have ways these symbolic ways to get closure to one season, and kick off the next.

I'm like you, though -- I hate the cold. I grew up in Buffalo NY and couldn't wait to leave. BRRR! I much prefer the climate where it rarely goes below 30!

I hope you start off fall on a great note!

Kirsten said...

Thanks Becke! It sounds like you've got wonderful things to look forward to. You know, I love all the fun we pack into the summer, but I am looking forward to being liberated from being tied to home for eight months out of the year. My husband is a school administrator, so we really can't vacation as a family except during the summer.

Your fall sounds fabulous -- happy birthday to your mom -- I hope you have a fabulous time with the family!

Kirsten said...

Catslady, what great activities -- darts sounds great. Of course, with my aim, someone would probably lose an eye. But perhaps the danger is part of the fun? LOL!

Kirsten said...

Amen, Pissenlit! I totally agree. When it's dark at 6 I just want to run home and curl up in bed. It's so hard to keep active when your body seems to be telling you to hibernate.

Kirsten said...

Kate, have a great time at the martini party! That sounds fabulous! I hope you haven't been too affected by the fires. They sound like they've been horrible.

But let's talk about this "bundling up" you mentioned. By southern California standards, does that mean putting on a light sweater?

Kirsten said...

Pat, with the weather in Houston, you must have a very clean house! LOL!

Christine Wells said...

Gorgeous pics, Kirsten! Ahhh, I love summer. Just love it, despite the terrible humidity here in Brisbane. Don't you look beautiful at your cousin's wedding?

Thankfully, we're about to leap into spring down here, so I'm going to enjoy that. I hate saying goodbye to swimming when the cooler months arrive.

Lynz Pickles said...

ENGLISH!!!! Oh, it's so beautiful! So very, very stunning! I missed you, English!

*ahem* I've been at a seminar-thingie - a Spanish-language seminar-thingie - all day. You have NO IDEA how pretty English seems after that. My brain, it is fried, and for once attractive men aren't the cause!

Hmm, summer. I'd say I'll miss the heat, but there hasn't been any to miss. But I guess I do have to say goodbye to long-ish days. They haven't been as long as they usually are in the summer, but they're certainly better than winter is. It can get dark here reeeeeally early in the winter. Which is depressing and no fun. So I'll totally miss long days.

MsHellion said...

I miss Summer Movie Blockbusters. *LOL* Admittedly I do get tired in the first month that EVERY movie is designed for the 15-24 crowd; and then I look forward to Fall for the movies that are for a slightly older crowd (movies with plots, that sort of thing)

I miss the GREEN trees when Fall comes. Everyone likes Fall leaves, but I don't. My favorite time of year is spring when the green leaves return and the trees flesh out in thick GREENNESS...and at night you can hear the frogs and crickets, and the air smells like, well, summer. Wet and green and cut hay. That's what I miss most about summer.

Suzanne Welsh said...

Hey Kirsten! Sorry I'm so late jumping into the conversation today. (You know college football started today...a sure sign fall is here! and I had to cheer on my BUCKEYES!!)

What do I have to say goodbye to? Well, eventually swimming with Rocky-the-wonder-dog in the pool. Given that it's only the beginning of September, I figure he and I have about 3 weeks left before the water really is too cold for me and him. (You know it's too cold when the dog with the fur coat puts a paw in and backs out.)

I'll miss the fresh corn on the grill. About one month of vine ripened tomatoes. And walking in shorts in the morning. But cooler weather is on it's way and in Texas, that's a blessing!

Becke Davis said...

Well, it's raining here now but it was nice when my son ran a 5K at the Cincinnati Zoo this morning. We were all up for that at the crack of dawn, and we're pretty groggy now.

We saw an incredible concert last night with two Australian guitarists/singers -- Rick Price and Tommy Emmanuelle. FABULOUS!