Perhaps it’s because of this Covid thing. Don’t know. But i do know i have been longing for home, the one where i grew up…well, it wasn’t up very much and there is some question as to whether i really grew up at all.
Just don’t know why the longing is occurring now. Especially since mid-August is about the last part of the year i would really want to be back there. i mean 95/95, temperature and humidity rolling in every day with grave digging on my weekday schedule until two-a-day football practice over on Hill Street came to beat me up even more.
And i sit here under the ceiling fan in my office. You see, we have never felt the need for air-conditioning and use our heating system to knock off the chill for an hour or so in the winter mornings. We prefer the fresh air. And this is really the first time i wished we had AC. Not because of the heat. We’ve had Santa Ana’s running through here before that would melt the soles off of your flip flops — hmm, i ‘ve got a pair but only for beach days, yet today, i’m flopping around like a penguin — but Santa Ana’s are dry: pools and the ocean can fix that, and buttoning up the house with the insulation Maureen decided to spray in our attic several years ago keeps us comfortable. But this stuff is Tennessee hot, hot and humid. i knew the signal when i retrieved the paper this morning, and looked at the sky just before dawn: cirrus, stratus, and up over the mountains to the east, cumulonimbus and nimbostratus were building: thunderstorm kind of stuff in the mountains, but the pink to reds and the spotty blue sky overhead likely meant no rain here, just hot and humid. See, all those Navy years pay off.
Considering we don’t have AC, i start listing friends to visit who just happen to have such in their homes. Then i realize that social distancing frowns on such. So, i start searching for something cool, like shade or underneath this ceiling fan. There is a gin and tonic in my future tonight. As i searched, it dawned on me the call back home was seated in the deep past.
August on Castle Heights Avenue in Lebanon, Tennessee, circa 1950’s and 1960’s. i searched for cool there and then also…in vain. Oh, the nights were almost bearable (if you didn’t mind the mosquitoes) even though at Baird Park ball fields in my catching gear, my green and white Texas Boot Company ball shirt would be soaked by the second inning, and you didn’t have but one jersey back then. And at 127 Castle Heights Avenue before we had air conditioning, i searched. There was one huge (and loud) window fan in the window above the stairs to upstairs. This was to provide moving air — still warm, mind you — for the two bedrooms, hall, and bath. i would clear off my bed, strip down to my underwear and sleep at the end of the bed in a position to maximize air coverage. Didn’t work.
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Now, it’s getting personal. i have a number of friends who are dealing with health issues. i know. i know: As you get older, things happen, and damn near all of them aren’t good. Bodies wear out in different ways. It doesn’t make any difference. Still hurts. Losing people for whom you care is even worse. We ain’t likely to stop it.
Yet there’s this other thing going on right now. Our cleaning lady who has been around us for about a quarter of a century is as much a friend as a service provider. She and her partner have missed the last two cleaning days. Marde is from Mexico. Her aunt and niece just died, one from the coronavirus. Worse, she now has eight family members who have contracted this pestilence. And Marde can’t go to see them. Sad.
i have several family and friends who have been unable to see loved ones suffering from various ills. They aren’t allowed to be with their loved ones. COVID.
It is just flat not right.
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With our cleaning up to us for the next several weeks and being the bright boy i am, i took on the kitchen this morning. i cleaned and siliconed a window sill for smoother operation. i vacuumed and then i mopped, Spic & Span of course. Like i said: bright boy.
So tonight, fans will be whirring in the Southwest corner if they don’t pull the plug on electricity for an hour or so like they did last night — it’s a roving plan they call “brown outs.” Seemed like a black out to me last night, although i did smile just a bit when it happened thinking about all of those cool people with AC who suddenly found themselves in our boat.
Tonight, i will have sashimi from my favorite Japanese restaurant, take out only, mind you. And a white wine, chilled. Problem is this crazy Tennessee weather is supposed to carry on in the Southwest corner, even get a bit worse for another four days or so.
But there is also happiness around. A grunch of birthdays today.
And of course, there are grand nephews Max and Culley.
i probably got the relationships a bit mixed up, but it’s okay. i’m pretty much considered “crazy uncle jim” to all of them.
Hot here. Yeh. Got up to 86. Humidity is at 47%.
Well, maybe it ain’t all that bad.