August is a month when nothing much matters but the heat index.
It’s what people talk about in passing in the supermarket, relishing the cold air conditioning before they sweat their way to the car with their purchases.
Is that why they call it the dog days of summer?
…The dog days are the hottest, most uncomfortable part of the Northern summer. Additionally, they also refer to promotions by American baseball ball parks to boost ticket sales during mid-afternoon games…
Almost forgotten are the patio gardens, where only the strongest and most resilient plants still stand. The others have withered under the heat until they could bear it no more.
The heat has even pretty much dried up the moon flowers I look forward to glimpsing at night, though I get out first thing every morning and give everything a good soaking before my cup of coffee.
I went to the grocery store today, strolling the aisles for things to eat at meals when all I feel like doing is lying under the ceiling fan on my bed reading books on my Kindle.
I went to the local supermarket, Reasors, where they are kind enough to help me put my things on the conveyor belt. Kind enough to sack it for me. And finally, kind enough to take it to my car.
“Get in and turn the air conditioning on,” the nice woman said as I helped her put it all in the Pathfinder. “I’ll finish with this.”
I could have fallen at her feet and kissed the tips of her shoes in sheer gratitude.
…The American weather and farming annual, The Old Farmer’s Almanac, explains that the phrase “Dog Days” conjures up the hottest, most sultry days of summer, coinciding with the heliacal rising of Sirius, the dog star, in the constellation Canis Major…
I gave myself the gift of a $4 bouquet of yellow flowers, bright as sunshine.
Someone sending you flowers on Valentine’s Day or your birthday is also grand. But there’s nothing quite like giving yourself this little treat during times when you feel like something the cat dragged in. Bedraggled and not worth spit.
Yesterday was a beast of a day. I’ve had a problem with mice for months. Maintenance has plugged holes, put down traps and sticky things I don’t want to touch. And yet the mice somehow get underneath my refrigerator and find their demise.
Last night was brutal because I had to listen to one screeching (ever heard a mouse screeching? It’s like fingernails on a blackboard, I tell you), for three straight hours.
I did feel sorry for the little rodent, but I have a terrible phobia of mice and I wasn’t moving that refrigerator out and picking it up. (Give me spiders any day of the week and I will gladly pick them up and put them outdoors without an ounce of dread.)
As evening fell, I took the dogs and their food and water and we went to the bedroom and closed the door. I turned on the sound machine and air purifier to cover the noise of the screeching, and happily finished a book on my blessedly back-lit Kindle.
My body today feels like I was holding my breath for an indeterminate time. My limbs feel like I’ve been pushing a huge rock up a hill, all because my nerves are worn ragged from yesterday’s experience.
I don’t need a single person to tell me that I’m being silly or over-reacting. I realize the ridiculousness of my fear. But it doesn’t do a thing to assuage it.
The only thing concerning mice I ever appreciated was the book “Of Mice And Men” by John Steinbeck.
I think somehow the month of August makes everything hard. People argue, emotions are more volatile. And I imagine there are more domestic calls during this dreary hot month when nerves are frayed.
Yes, fall is within a stone’s throw now, but will not tamp down the heat for several more months. I always look forward to fall because the heat has drained me. I’m not a summer person. Give me snow and blankets and hot chocolate any day of the week.
And so I got all my groceries inside, then stood at the kitchen counter and played with my $4 yellow bouquet. I got out my tallest white pitcher and arranged the flowers, even tucking a few in the bottles in the kitchen window.
After I was finished tweaking the flowers, I felt much better. There’s just something about flower arranging that is beneficial to your mental and emotional health.
The dogs are flopped across my legs on the ottoman, snoozing away the afternoon.
And all is right with the world.
Have a great evening, mouse-free I trust. And I sincerely hope that your air conditioner holds up like a soldier in combat until the weather cools.