Tuesday morning when I left for work promptly at 6 a.m. (gulp), my car's temperature gauge read 43 degrees. It certainly felt that cold, and there was some decidedly fall-like fog hanging around, but that cool on July 29th? Nah.
Well, this morning when I left it was 42 degrees. I cranked the heat in the car and felt great after about 10 minutes in my toasty 4-wheeled cocoon. I had inklings of sweater-weather (my favorite), Thanksgiving dinner and kids back to school.
This all beg's the question: What the heck? I mean, today is July 31st. Mid-summer. We still have the hot August nights before us, and the Indian-summer of September after that. How can I be thinking fall and argyle kneesocks (don't own any, but makes me think of school) and corn mazes (well, I do drive by that one, still growing)?
This morning I was thinking ahead to Paul's and my second wedding anniversary, less than 8 weeks away. (Why do I still automatically think "honeymoon" instead of "anniversary?" Will I ever get that right, or are we still honeymooning? Now I'm confused.) We spent a full week on our boat in mid-September, cool (like now) at night, warming during the day. The San Juan Islands were relatively quiet, as kids were back to school, adults back to work, vacation time over until the following year. We had a full dock to ourselves at Stuart Island (rare to impossible in summer), and even Friday Harbor was relatively quiet. It was idyllic and romantic and fabulous.
Now, though, while I am excited to herald in my favorite time of year (fall, in case you haven't guessed) yet again, I'm also a little worried...about our tomatoes. Heck, our entire veggie garden. Our plants aren't performing nearly as well as some of the neighboring gardens I pass by on my way to and from work. I mean, that little corner garden off of Park Street in Tenino, where the lady put up the hot wire all around (to keep out deer or local kids??)...her beans are about 2/3 to the top of their poles. We have two or three - out of 2 rows! - nearly that high, and the rest are still trying. And the corn? One neighbor down Crowder, an elderly man with a H-U-G-E garden, has corn that would no doubt come halfway up my thighs. Our tallest hits me about the same height as a decent work skirt would - no more than two inches above the knee. (As if I still wear skirts to work. Do I even still own one? Hmmm.) The tomatoes, bowing under my heavy scrutiny this morning, look fairly healthy, with lots of blossoms, but the only plant with any fruit is the Early Girl...two nearly red, one hefty green one and some smaller greenies just starting. Are Early Girls all we're gonna get out of this growing season in Tenino? I know it's a shorter season than we had in Tacoma, but...well...let's just say my manic dreams of canning batches of tomato sauce and whole tomatoes and (whatever someone would make out of fresh tomatoes)...well, they're shriveling up.
Granted, there's still the full month of August ahead...perhaps the heat and sun, should it deem to shine down on our little rocky patches, will work some magic. There's always Miracle Grow. (Someday I'll go organic, really!) And next year...