Hot, in the best kind of truly humid summer heat, the heat that brings me back to those endless childhood summers when a summer was endless and not merely a few heartbeats. In a strange kind of way, the heat rejuvenates me. I wake early, work hard, then finish my chores as the day funnels down to swimming.
At a nearby garage, I pick up my car. There’s no one there in the empty building, the side doors rolled all the way up to ceiling. I stand there, listening to traffic and watching shadows from the trees flicker over the cement floor.
Two women come in and tell me they’re limping along a Toyota Rav with a flat tire. One woman wears wool socks and winter boots, and I think, Of course you’re from Maine. They’re both much younger than me, nearly bouncing with excitement, and I ask what brings them here. They’re checking the world out. Their excitement is the brightest thing I’ve seen all day. The woman with the wool socks says with a smile, Could do with some rain.
I answer, It’ll rain. She looks at me as if my assurance is farfetched. I add, Eventually, and then wander behind the garage looking for the man to write a check. The garage is on the riverbank. I look at the shallow water. Get a move on, I think. There’s plenty to do. But I live in Vermont. There aren’t that many days in a year I can wear a sundress and not wish for a sweater.