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Sunshine at Bedtime

by:Rachel

Thoughts evoked by the word “summer” usually bring to mind moments, days, etched in our memories from our childhood.  Having spent most of those carefree years on Canada’s west coast, summer for me meant climbing trees, riding bikes, playing baseball, building sandcastles, the tangy taste of sea salt in my hair, sunshine at bedtime.  Summer meant I could go outside after dinner, wear shorts, eat on the patio, and run around barefoot.  They were warm days, full days.

Summer in Mexico and then again in Minneapolis brought with it changes, a veering away from how things had always been.  For one thing, the summers in both these localities were a good deal hotter than the warm, mild days I remembered on the west coast.  Being a red-head, I learned to linger in the shade.  Also, the beach was no longer just a 5 minute drive away.

Living in India during the summer brought the biggest shock to my system.  We arrived there in the month of February- the beginning of their warmer weather and to me, it felt like I’d just gone from winter to summer with no transition other than a long plane ride: the snow of New York State to what felt like summer in India.  Little did I realize that I hadn’t even tasted “summer” yet.  The weeks got progressively hotter and then came to a boiling point in India’s hottest month– May.  Then, when summer would normally be happening (in my mind, at least), the monsoon season arrived with days on end of rain– it kind of redefines one’s idea of summer.

Scotland has done that to me again.  This northern place has its own way of tweaking my preconceived ideas of how summer ought to be.  For example, here I am in mid-June, wearing a light sweater in the somewhat cool evening, wondering if tomorrow I’ll need a sleeveless top or a jacket.  Experiencing my second summer here in Scotland has caused me to be prepared for all kinds of weather.  When you get a hot day here, everyone goes outside- they don’t want to miss it.  It makes for awfully long days in the cafe, not only because one wants to be out in the weather, but also because we get so few customers.  However, just because a day starts out sunny and warm doesn’t mean it’ll stay that way.  I almost feel more comfortable hanging my laundry out to dry on a cloudy day as often I feel like we’re less likely to get rain than on a sunny day.  I suppose you could say that I miss the conventional summers of my childhood, but a good summer day in Scotland causes me to feel blessed, knowing that they are gifts to be treasured.  And while the sun isn’t necessarily still out when John and I hit the sack, the day is in a state of lingering dusk that seems to last for hours.  In fact, I think at present we may have 2 hours of actual night in the course of 24 hours.  Blackout blinds would be nice!

2 Responses to “Sunshine at Bedtime”

  1. Rebekah
    June 21st, 2008 22:53
    1

    Hey guys,
    It’s been a while since we sent you a note. How are you all doing? We are doing good. Summers in India…oh my goodness, I almost forgot what it was like…we were there in India, the whole month of March and I thought that it can’t get any hotter than this..but I now remember how it could be like in May….Hope the girls are doing great. We love you all..Rebekah Garneau

  2. Jayne
    July 12th, 2008 16:06
    2

    I miss you guys enjoyed the new photos the girls are getting so big when are you coming to the states I would love to fly to NY and see you. give the girls a kiss and hug from us

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