Heat Wave

hummingbird, cardinal, lightning bugs 028It ain’t the heat; it’s the humility.  ~ Yogi Berra

Almost two weeks of hellishly high temperatures, thunderstorms, and the resulting steamy atmosphere have made the world around Full Moon Cottage a sauna. A Finnish winter in reverse. We dash outside to sear our lungs and open every pore, then run back inside to chill ourselves silly.

Nonetheless, despite sketchy weeding and deadheading missions conducted in haste while smothered in mosquito repellant, I seem to have kept the gardens happy. And at dusk, cloaked in conditioned air and holding glasses of chilled wine, we’ve enjoyed the seasonal spectacle of fireflies flitting about, seeking romance and union.

hummingbird, cardinal, lightning bugs 042Every morning, I refill the birdbaths with fresh cold water, check the many feeders, and make sure all of our summer guests are tended. A kind friend sent me a wren house her husband built and we now have house wrens serenading us with their aggressively happy chirping.

hummingbird, cardinal, lightning bugs 011Nights have been less pastorally soothing. Thunder and lightning have rumbled and crackled through most of the last week’s dreamtime. I can tell by the dark circles under our eyes that both of us need a long, quiet night. It looks like that may happen sometime between Sunday and Tuesday, when a dry, temperate spell is forecast.

hummingbird, cardinal, lightning bugs 006No complaints. The rain has been welcome and the high river allows for canoe rides to continue. Other parts of our state have been flooded, and for many farmers, hopes pinned to a planting season and eventual harvest have vanished. Last year these were lost to drought and this year to flooding, a vivid reminder that we are still tethered to our climate and its health for our sustenance.

hummingbird, cardinal, lightning bugs 001Well, almost no complaints.

The chiggers that plagued my gardening for several summers disappeared completely during last summer’s drought, I expect from lack of food and moisture. I am made, utterly, of smells and tastes most delicious to mites; they’d completely ignore Phillip if he were lying nude in the garden and I stood beside him covered in armor. They’d head straight for the chinks in my metal and pierce my flesh with their nasty stylostomes, injecting enzymes that melt my cell structure into chigger malts. I’d hoped that between the drought and our lovely cold winter they’d disappeared for good, but discovered this morning that they’ve not only survived but are thriving…the confident human gardener, smug in her knowledge of where to dig and what to plant and how to improve the landscape, bustles outside to rearrange and redesign the earth surrounding her home and returns covered in itchy red welts, brought low by a voracious and nearly invisible mite.

Yogi Berra was right: It ain’t the heat, it’s the humility!

hummingbird, cardinal, lightning bugs 013


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10 thoughts on “Heat Wave

  1. Hi Kitty…
    It is so bizarre this summer…We are chilly and completely flooded out…Everyone’s gardens are rotting, yellow plants withering in the mud. Evenings have been in the 40’s….Slowly it is rising, but the rain continues. We are headed into our second month. I am learning to let go and let things be what they are. There is nothing I can do, this is one time I have no control. It is a hard lesson to learn. I planted the garden twice but refuse to do it a third time. The flowers I planted are literally in mud and hating it so I have given up worrying about them. Knowing about weather manipulation has made it even harder to accept. If it was just mother nature I could let it go more easily, knowing it is being created is extremely difficult. They took away our ocean food source with the gulf oil spill, they have taken away clean water with fracking, GMO’s have destroyed our produce and grains, and now storms are destroying our ability to grow our own food. We are slowly being starved to death. I hope you get a reprieve from the heat soon. We too are now dealing with mosquitoes. We are all being tested but somehow we will survive these tests as well. Have Faith! Stay cool.


    1. Oh, dear; I’m so sorry to hear your rain has continued so unremittingly, VK. It sounds relentless and it’s sad to watch a garden suffer…I hope your birds and other wildlife is OK. I send you peace and strength. Your decision to go with the flow is wise; I know that can be a challenge…Gentle peace.


  2. “A Finnish winter in reverse” – that is priceless, Kitty! We’ve had violent storms, alternating the weather from hot humid sauna to cool damp fog, and a few nice days in between. The plants seem to enjoy the very weather that we find difficult; everything is growing here like, well, like the tropics! Your garden looks absolutely lovely, so it seems to be happy as well. Sorry to hear you have chiggers – ugh! I’ve gotten a few mosquito and sweat bee stings but nothing too outrageous; I go out for an hour or too at 6 A.M. to work in the garden before the bugs wake up and the temps skyrocket.

    Here’s something for you and Phillip to dance to while enjoying your chilled wine and A.C. Enjoy! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SvqE0EQlaEw


    1. Ha! That’s the song I was singing all morning, although I was trying for the Marilyn Monroe approach. But this is quite an interesting rendition, Lynn! I’ll bet it goes well with wine! I’m usually doing my yoga at 6 AM, but thanks for the nudge. I should get out in the garden first.

      It was only 88 today and it looks like the humidity is dropping tomorrow, so, even though we still have 2 days of rain ahead, it’s getting better…for the gardener. Plants are happy. Sending love and, as always, great gratitude for your visit.


  3. Your pictures, Kitty, are always such a delight. But I am amazed by the extremes you have to suffer in your part of the world. Good thing that the heat is just outside, and doesn’t make you miserable at home. We suffered a bit in winter, but now in summer the weather is very temperate, and inside, it’s just delightful without the need for air conditioner. The windows are open all the time, and it is a pleasure to enjoy a summer’s breeze. For the most part, the temperatures do not reach 30º. Sorry about the mites. I can imagine what it’s like, because mosquitoes are especially fond of me… Best wishes for a bit of relief in the coming days. Liked the funny comment by Yogi Berra.


    1. Your weather sounds lovely, Shimon! We are blessed today: open windows and calm weather, though rain will come later…but a lovely stretch is coming next week…all in a summer, I guess, for now. The gardens look great, so I’m very happy for them and the wildlife…if I suit up and wear repellent, the mites don’t hurt me at all… Perhaps one day, we’ll discover they’re useful for something. :0


  4. Oh goodness…I’m breaking out in a sweat just reading that….reminds me of Dubai when it got so hot I swear I was hallucinating!!!

    I am laughing here though imagining you smothered in repellent and still being devoured alive, I’m the same, everything that bites feasts on me while leaving hubs attack free!!!!

    Oh I do love the fireflies and that little wren and dove are divine…there is something so gentle about a dove, I do love them. I’m always amazed at how loud the wrens are given there size!

    A glass of chilled wine while watching fireflies is something I would tolerate the heat for….wow….what an amazing experience….I would love to see a video. Now….keep a glass for me!!!xxxx


    1. It turned today, Snow Bird; the heat is gone…will be gorgeous for the next week–some rain, but open windows most of the time! I’ll try to take a video of the fireflies; actually, that would be easier than trying to anticipate their flickering…not sure I can load it up on WordPress, but I can try. My love has my camera this week…he went off to explore a state that’s a better fit for us than Wisconsin has become…I stayed with all the 4-leggeds, and he’s updating me fairly regularly. I am having severe camera withdrawal, that’s for sure. And of course, I miss Phillip, but I’m happy he’s having an adventure; he deserves it after a busy school year . 🙂

      Bought a bottle of my favorite wine and am chilling it for when the 4-leggeds and I have our popcorn-movie party tonight…don’t tell anyone; it makes me sound even weirder than usual. 🙂


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