Of COURSE Sheri won.
As a child, late summer was devoted to the Tyranny of Vegetables, or at least that was how I thought of it: in all caps, screaming. Just as the thermometer peaked, the garden would also be at peak output. Every day, we’d pick baskets of tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini, and the like, and then stuff it all into jars to last through the winter. Canning-involving hot jars, hot vegetables, hot water, and a pressure cooker- is the very definition of what not to do in the heat. It almost made me glad to start school again.
Now that my garden is a more manageable patch of heirloom tomato plants, my attitude has also changed; now, I’m all about seizing the ‘last’: the last chance for a beach day, a picnic outing, local corn on the cob. Caprese salad, a glass of wine on the porch in the relative cool of a summer evening. Ice cream from a seasonal stand. As the sun sets earlier and mornings take on a hint of crispness, I want to cram in more of all of the things I’ll miss when summer is over.
This year, the desire to carpe diem is even stronger, as warm weather and outdoor activities have been key to the ability to have slightly more contact with friends and extended family. You can’t have a big family dinner, but you can do a socially-distanced cookout. You can’t go to a bar, but driveway drinks with the neighbors are a decent substitute. And you might not feel comfortable dining inside a restaurant, but all the impromptu patios, beer gardens, and even parking lots have been a nice relief from cooking every single night. But we live in New England, not the Caribbean. This too shall pass, and then what?
So I’m seizing. I’m thinking of a nice little Grechetto with that Caprese salad, and a bottle of my new favorite Dolceacqua for a picnic. I’ll grab a few more beach days, eat more perfectly fresh sweet corn slathered with butter and salt, and make another visit to the ice cream stand. I’ll drink something-perhaps several somethings-dry, crisp, and pink on the back porch.
Tempus Fugit. Carpe Diem.