August 10, 2022
Yesterday, after nearly two weeks of ick, the humidity finally broke here, thank goodness. Monday, late afternoon, it teemed outside briefly turning our street into a river. But instead of making things cooler, they just got exponentially more humid—to the point that David couldn’t really sit out on the porch for long, because it was too hard for him to breathe. It even rained again while he was out there. Our porch has a roof over it and we’ve been known to sit out in a torrential downpour, provided the wind doesn’t blow the wet onto us. So we tend to indulge ourselves, except on days that are so thick, the oxygen seems to hide.
Then, yesterday morning, it was cooler. David went out first thing in his shorts, and then came back into the house to put long pants and socks on. He said after the extreme heat of the last week or so, the 68 degrees Fahrenheit that felt like 70 was too cool for just sitting around in.
We had a good weekend, and on Sunday hosted David’s friend who came down from up north, to visit not only us, but others in the general area that he knows. He’d grown up in this part of the province and still has ties here. He and his son came for supper, and our daughter graciously grilled steaks and shrimps and foil wrapped potatoes. When the feast was done, all had happy tummies.
Because it was such a hot day on Sunday, we only had one item that we cooked in the house, and that was the fresh corn we got from our usual source, a farm about three miles north of town. And since we only let the vegetable dance in the boiling water for a very few minutes, the house didn’t get overly heated.
I do love summer, and I like “usual” hot days – into the eighties or nineties. Of course, lately the thermometer reaches much higher. Still, it really is the humidity that does one in. It causes difficulties in breathing for some, and swollen feet in others. About the only good thing I can say about this heat is that if I begin to feel too warm here inside my central-air-conditioned home, I can step outside, out the back door or the front, for just a few minutes. And when I come inside again, ahh, the cool is once again noticeable!
Our gardens, full of beans (green and yellow) and tomatoes, are doing very well. There are some large tomatoes growing, and they will be ripening soon. I don’t think there’s anything better than a tomato that you pluck from your own garden about two minutes before consuming it. I like both a toasted tomato sandwich, and one on bread with lettuce and salad dressing.
As with every growing season, we constantly observe and review and make notes for improvement for the next season. This year’s list of “adjustments” includes one thing my daughter has been promoting for a couple of years, and one born out of necessity this year. And why in regard to that latter item this year was so different, I have no idea.
In the spring, daughter is going to take all the dirt out of the gardens in order to replace it with new—once her daddy deepens those boxes. That is something that’s necessary, because it’s dirt in a box, and has no way to refresh itself. And it does need to be deeper, because plants grow so well they begin to topple. But this’s year’s near calamity?
You may recall that David loves to provide seeds and nuts for the wild critters. The squirrels and chipmunks surely know where to come for a feast. So, this spring when the chippies saw David planting the bean seeds in our box gardens, why, they just thought he was making mealtime fun for them!
The result was that he had to replant about half of the quantity of the beans and had to settle for climbing bean plants when there were no more bush bean seeds to be had anywhere. Once the beans were up and began to grow, the chippies left them alone. And no, he did not provide anyplace for those climbing beans to climb except into each other, and, of course, into the tomatoes.
So, the two-part resolution for next year: tomatoes in their gardens, and the beans in theirs, with deeper gardens and fresh soil. And do not plant the seeds until he’s successfully fabricated a temporary mesh “top” to protect those seeds yet allow plenty of sun and rain for the growing process to begin.
And I have written all that down because we’re older now and tend to forget these kinds of things, no matter how important they seem in the moment.