Forty-five days of record breaking heat. Here in South East Michigan that means we just had 45 consecutive days with temperatures over 80 degrees. Admittedly, breaking a record that includes a high temp of 80 or more cracks me up. Especially after living in Arizona, with months of temperatures over 100, being the norm. But also because I am painfully aware of the people suffering through heat and drought in Texas and the southern states of US, where heat and humidity are common, but not months of over 100.
Truth be told, many of those 45 days the temps here were in the 90’s and even a couple of days of 102. Working in a church without air conditioning, we felt the heat. I abandoned my alb, that polyester white robe that is tradition in the Episcopal church. I had the altar party wear street clothes, instead of robes they usually wear. Some parishioners were upset about this, I understand.
But yesterday the temperature dipped into the 70’s, with low humidity and a low dew point. There was a chill in the air. All day I had this memory-sense of anticipation. Autumn is coming and with it this memory of preparing for the school year to start. Every year of my childhood my mother would make clothes and buy clothes for me, my wardrobe for the start of a new school year. We would buy school supplies and organize binders, paper, pencils, and pens. I’d get my room assignment and teacher. And, I’d be filled with a sense of hope for the year to come! Always excited, always the optimist, I loved school!
All those feelings rushed to the forefront of my senses yesterday, triggered by the coolness in the air, the shift of sunlight moving south, suggesting that fall is near.
No school for me this year. And, at least for this year, neither of my children will be in school either. But the program year at church will start up, and as the families return from vacations and lake homes, and cabins in the woods, there will be much for me to learn. For us to learn, about one another. And so, as I come to the final days of my summer vacation, of two weeks of stay-cation, which have been packed with projects and cooking, and reading, and sleeping, I look forward to returning to work, anticipating the year ahead.
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