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» Thursday, August 16, 2007The Illusionary Perfect Summer
The ones written about in books. Always the same: warm days, but interspersed with wonderful treats such as a cooling breeze while reading in a hammock under the trees, splashing at the beach or the pool, ice cream enjoyed as it drips, vacation in a car zooming through the mountains, night air cooling so much that sometimes you have to grab a sweater. "Sun-dappled" days when the Swallows and Amazons sailed on the lake and the Bobbsey Twins had adventures in the country and students went punting on the Cam.
Huh. The reality is sweat, swarms of bugs, air so leaden it weighs down your shoulders and smells like hot metal, sun like the flame of a welding torch on your skin and the interrogator's light shining right in your eyes, haze, fumes, still close and hot and sticky as the clock approaches midnight. Elderly people dying in third floor apartments or walking two miles in 100°F heat to get a free fan from a hospital. Dogs panting before they've gotten one step. Birds crowded at the feeder not for the seed but for the water. Misery.
"Sweet summer" my foot! Sheer Hell.