Neal and I are always planning a trip away to escape from the summer heat of the South. In fact, we planned the most exciting trip to Montana this year only to find that when we arrived, it was 98 degrees with the heat index into the 100s. That is absolutely my luck to take the oppressive heat with me.
I work with people who love the hot, sunny, sweltering days of summer and despise cooler, more perfect weather. So I understand that there are people who do not share my sentiments for hot weather or the need to escape it. For the rest of us, we are always thinking about it! I will also confess that I throw a party when the first yellow leaf appears. I cherish that early reminder that autumn is drawing near.
One of the most beautiful trips we made several years ago was to Martha’s Vineyard. I was with Barbara Cockerham, the editor of Victoria Magazine, and we were working on a feature story on Martha’s Vineyard. In the morning we would take a stroll before breakfast and enjoy the roses on the white picket fences and the marvelous breeze coming off the ocean. I think of it often and wonder if it is a beautiful, cool summer in Maine.
The truth is I think the only place we have been in the summer to truly escape the heat is Alaska. Alaska is not only cool but also incredibly beautiful. The evergreen trees seem to cleanse the air. The constant ocean breeze air conditions the world perfectly.
At home we have to create our own escapes from the heat. Here are the things we do to really make us feel cooler:
- Eat ice cream often, especially homemade.
- Freeze fruits like grapes and bananas and enjoy a refreshing snack.
- Slice and share a refrigerated fresh watermelon.
- Serve Lemonade, as it refreshes us immensely (or limeade, which I love).
- Serve more cold salads with light dressings.
- Stuff homegrown tomatoes with chicken salad for a great entrée for a summer supper.
- And last by not least—keep plenty of iced tea in the refrigerator.
As we count down to autumn and enjoy the last few days of summer, I love watching the seasons turn. Everything changes—from the food we eat to the places we frequent. Each season has its advantages and is adored by many. I come to life in the cooler seasons, and as I bid summer farewell, I am grateful for the beautiful flowers in my garden, the incredible vegetables and fruits we have enjoyed, and the joy of watching my grandchildren play outside, fish, and swim.
What is your favorite season?