I attended an author talk this morning and was delighted. Faith Sullivan, author of nine books (which you really should read) charmed us with an excerpt from an upcoming book, and then spent time answering questions about the writing life, about characters that she misses when she finishes telling their story, about the inspiration that a place like Door County can give to artists. I wish everyone I knew had been there.
But here’s a problem: we have an abundance of choices right now of good places to be. Musicians come from all over the country to play concerts in homes, in auditoriums, in city parks. I’ve been to three plays in July, including Shakespeare and a world premiere—all as good as you could find anywhere. The galleries are full of art, and on top of that, the Plein Air art festival is happening right now- so we can watch artists work as they stand on the side of a road to paint a barn, to sketch the harbor…
The water beckons: warm, blue, perfect. Do we go to the beach for a swim? SUP? Kayak? Fish?
My meadow is full of wildflowers.
My raspberries are coming on..
The farm markets offer bounty of every kind. Even the tomatoes are in – the garden ones that make all of the greenhouse ones ashamed to claim the same name.
Fishermen are catching fish. Boats fill the harbors.
The cherries are thick on the trees.
It is a crowd of good things.
And just like any deluge, it feels a bit overwhelming right now. Part of me feels like screaming into this throng: Wait! Take your turn! Not all at once! Spread out!
Because of course, it will be January before long. The crowds will be gone, and the days will be short and the concerts will be a bit rare. I’ll have to pretend that a greenhouse tomato satisfies.
Every place has its tradeoffs: to live here means to live with these contrasts, with this feast-of-summer-wonder and famine-of-winter sparsity.
Like all other bounties, like all other feasts, how wrong of me to complain. So today, I’ll forget about winter and be grateful.
Thanks be to God for the many gifts of summer.