Y'all remember the Seinfeld episode where Elaine is talking to Puddy about being afraid she's going to hell and says, "And the HEAT! My God, the heat!"
Our local newspaper had an article today that told us the summer of 2010 was a very hot one, historically speaking. File it under things that make you go, "No sh^%."
Jason and I quote Seinfeld a lot in general, but we've found ourselves throwing out Elaine's above line a lot this summer. If this June, July, and August had a theme for us, that theme would be, "I'm hot. And not in the good way."
With summer unofficially ending this weekend, I thought it would be a good time to take a look back on the long, hot summer of 2010. It was the summer when...
We discovered that our happy place, Hilton Head Island, is not so happy after all.
How could you have such an incredible time at a vacation destination one year, and then be so miserable the next time you go? The place we stayed this time was dirty and (remember the theme this summer?) hot, with air conditioning that only kinda sorta worked. The kid threw up the first night we were there after eating a bad shrimp, my rental bike got stolen even though I locked the darn thing up (there were cut locks littering the ground around where my and several other's bikes were taken), and the only beautiful day we had was, of course, the day we left. However...
We also discovered that, at least in Savannah, we really do believe in ghosts.
The night I found my bike had been stolen (and biking was the most fun thing we'd found to do on gray days) I wanted to get the heck off the island. So we drove to Savannah, got in for dinner at The Lady & Sons with no waiting, and went on a ghost tour. The most fun we had on our Hilton Head vacation wasn't actually in Hilton Head. Ains volunteered to take pictures after the guide told us to look for orbs in our photos, which could be spirits lurking in the dark. Sure enough, we found a perfect orb in one of our pictures, which the guide told Ainsley was definitely a ghost, much to her delight. When we got home, I found two more pictures with orbs. Jason thought they were water droplets until I showed him one picture in which the orb appeared right in front of his male parts, in which case he became totally convinced that it was a ghost. Like the guy in Ghost Adventures, female spirits are apparently drawn to him in a carnal sort of way.
Jason and I got addicted to True Blood.
Where do you go after the season finale of Lost? To a show that doesn't make you think and is pure escapism. We rented the first two seasons on DVD throughout the summer; right now we're using our free trial month of HBO to catch up on season 3 on-demand. No matter how hot it is outside, no matter how bad a day I've had (and there have been many bad days these first weeks of school), hearing Bill the vampire say, "Sookeh!" in that melodramatic rasp cracks me up. And Eric the vampire is so incredibly hot. In the good way.
We watched Inception, felt both awed and confused, and talked about it for days.
It's been a while since a summer movie made me exercise my brain. I know there's been a lot of backlash, but I loved every minute of the ride.
Jason built a 10-inch reflecting Dobsonian telescope that actually works, making an astronomy geek out of our child (and maybe me, too.)
I've never exactly seen Jason as "handy" (love you, anyway! mean it!), so I'm still a little shocked that he was able to build a real, honest-to-god working telescope. It's not a little bucket-scope like we made in Governor's Scholars out of a 5-gallon pickle bucket and some PVC pipe...it's big, freakin' scientific instrument, y'all. And through it Ainsley has seen the rings of Saturn, the Ring Nebula (faintly), 4 of Jupiter's moons, and a host of double stars and clusters and what-not. I love watching her drop all the girly-girly stuff she got for her birthday in a red-hot minute on clear nights after her Daddy calls out, "Want to go look through the telescope?" It's good for a girly-girl to get her geek on sometimes, you know?
I found out there's no joy quite like watching your kid work really, really hard to achieve something.
After a really fun season swimming for our pool's instructional summer team, Ains decided that she wants swimming to be her sport. We thought cheer leading had become her fave; turns out it takes a back seat to her love of being in the water (whew.) She found out she could try out for an advanced indoor team that makes its home at our family rec center, and during the try-outs I saw her push herself harder than I've ever seen before. She set her mind on a goal and focused on it and swam her absolute hardest in an attempt to kick some butt. Her breast stroke was weak so she's been asked to work on that and try out again mid-season, and I thought that might make her want to give up. But she has decided (without my prodding; I'm not one of those parents) to attend 3 practices a week this fall because she wants to be on the team so badly. It brings tears to my eyes to watch her push herself in the pool; every parent wants their kid to work hard for something they want, even more than they want them to be naturally great at something.
I read a very, very good book.
Librarians aren't supposed to say this, but I haven't been completely impressed with books this year. The best things I'd read had been young adult fiction, but it had been a while since I picked up an "adult" book and found it impossible to put down. The Passage, by Justin Cronin, got under my skin in a way a book hasn't in a long time. If you haven't read this one yet, do yourself a favor and get a copy. Don't be intimidated by its heft; you can rip through it fairly quickly because you won't be able to stop yourself. It's a page-turner, but it's also literary...it's just a darn good book.
Jason said goodbye to glasses and contacts forever (or at least until old-age-vision sets in.)
On the day that this post posts, I will be taking the hubby to get Lasik. I'm sure it will go well. No, really, I am. And if it goes well for him, then I will get it someday. Yeah, sure. I probably will. Maybe. If I can get past the thought of, you know, lasers burning away at my cornea.
That's it for me, folks. Here on the tail-end of one hot summer, tell me what you'll remember about this one.