Today, I’ve decided to write about a controversial topic. Wait, hear me out before you leave! I’m just going to write about the weather, I swear!
Here’s why it’s controversial: Because I love summer. I don’t look forward to fall. Yes, you read that correctly. While everyone is posting colorful fall photos and talking football on Facebook, I’m lamenting the loss of hot weather, of days spent at the beach.
Yes, summer has its drawbacks. If you aren’t at the beach, it can be pretty damn hot and miserable. It sucks when you’re at the day job, staring out the window at a gorgeous summer day, knowing that by the time you leave and get home and make dinner and clean up, there will not be enough time to go to the beach, even for an hour. It’s worse when that perfect weather is on a Tuesday, and by Saturday morning, thunderstorms have rolled in, leaving behind a drop in temperature that is reminiscent of, well… fall. And yes, it’s annoying to try to keep up with the watering, so your garden does not shrivel up and die, just as the tomatoes are starting to ripen. And I’ll acknowledge that if you do not have air conditioning or a basement, it can really, really suck on those steamy, humid days when, for whatever reason, you can’t get to the beach to cool off.
All that said, there are so many wonderful things about summer. The drinks, for one. This year, my husband discovered flavored San Pellegrino mixed with berry vodka, and I admit, we’ve gone through a lot of vodka since June. I don’t drink beer, but I understand that when Summer Shandy shows up on the shelves at the grocery store, it’s more an indication of summer’s arrival than Memorial Day weekend.
I’m a red wine drinker under normal circumstances (which are pretty much any circumstances), however, I tend to drink more white during the summer, because, well, it’s chilled and refreshing and cool. This summer, I discovered Cherry Tart Chardonnay, and have declared it my favorite. My husband and I also tasted and then purchased a custom made order of Viognier, a delicious white wine, which we will bottle very, very soon. It will then sit in the basement (on its side, of course) until next spring, when we will bring it out and undoubtedly barrel through the entire order (30 bottles) before next fall.
The food is better in the summer, too. Okay, yes, I’m a Midwesterner, so I’m of course a fan of comfort food. But there’s something to be said for fresh tomatoes, strawberries, corn, hell, anything fruit or vegetable. They all taste better in the summer. I tend to eat healthier and I’m outdoors more frequently during the summer months, so that weight I struggle to keep off usually manages to stay that way – until fall hits, and suddenly it’s easier to hide the bulges behind sweaters and fleece, while I work my way through delicious casseroles and spaghettis and chili and all those utterly delightfully heavy fall and winter dishes.
And let’s not forget the beach. Or the pool. Or even the river. Sitting in a camp chair with your feet in the water. Canoeing. Boating. Kayaking. Fishing. I don’t even like to fish, but I’ll scale the hell out of a batch of bluegills, if you catch ‘em for me. And then my husband will batter and grill them, and we’ll all sit around the picnic table, eating the fruits of our labor. Outdoors.
There’s also swimming. Lounging on a floating raft, with a Mike’s Hard Lemonade in your hand, one leg dangling in the water, to keep cool. Heading out to the swim platform and practicing your cannonballs, over and over again. Drifting down the river in inner tubes. Skiing. Tubing. Taking a leisurely cruise around the lake on a pontoon boat.
During winter, I have to practically push my kids out the door, regardless of how antsy and bored they claim to be. During summer, I only have to utter the word, “Beach,” and they’re ready to go fourteen seconds later. And it’s guaranteed they’ll be exhausted by the time we’re heading back to the house. The dog, too. It’s hard to give the dog the proper amount of exercise when it’s ten below, but on beach days, we can wear her out enough to last for a solid two days.
So yeah, I admit it. I love summer. I lament its ending each year, and from September through May, I desperately look forward to its return. Keep your fall colors and football tailgates, and hand me the Summer Shandy, please.
Hey, since summer is unfortunately coming to an end, I bet you’ll need something to do with your time, once a month or so. Why not join my Facebook group, Come Wine with Tami? Hang out and chat with authors, without the hard sell. Oh, and don’t forget to bring the wine!