Wednesday, July 30, 2014

En Route, 66

Thankfully, some summer things do not change. A warm bun, a hot dog, a cold beer, for example. A morning swim in the ocean. A rainy day with no outdoor obligations and a stack of books and magazines to read. A ferry taking you to an island. The miracle of seersucker. New sneakers waiting in the morning on the floor by the bed.

The first cup still contains a teaspoon of hope, even as the newspaper of choice  in our hand is far less than a shell of its former self; in fact, it has become a very stale pain quotidien. Media-ocrity is a sin. Still, it's there and we cling.

Somewhere a lobster fisherman lifts a trap off Mount Desert for another's supper, teenagers load the farm stand table on Siasconset Road with sweet corn, and the first real tomatoes begin to grace the Montauk Highway stands .

Meanwhile, the home team hits a homer, Van Morrison wants "to be born again," and in the evening Erroll plays soft, Oscar plays impossibly fast, and Nat rides Route 66 one more time in a voice and style that Chuck Berry couldn't catch in a Speedster running at 4,500 rpm.

There are plenty of top down days with the wind messing the hair, the radio off, and the sound of the five-speed engine humming on the steep climb on to I-95. Big rigs respectfully make room in a way that, sadly, Mercedes never will.

Is there anything that says summer more than blue hydrangeas? Nasturtium leaves, the aroma of privet, and a Bob White's call come to mind.

And then, there is always an outdoor shower late in the afternoon with the breeze coming up, and the "no service" on the phone.

If you have any lingering doubts about this summer, one word for you: Jeter.

It turns out that a sixty-seventh summer is a pretty good one, a graduation behind us, a wedding ahead.

An aspirin in the morning, a Lipitor at night; Van crooning, "everything gonna be alright."

Or, as Marley wrote in one of his psalms, "Who the cap fit, let them wear it."

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