Not Ready Yet 8


It is as hard to explain how hot 106 degrees is as it is to explain string theory. From my perch on the chaise at the neighborhood pool, the air rippling with soul cracking heat, the Sunday evening had a distinctly end of summer feel.

People crowded into the deep end, kids playing an endless and terribly disorganized game of Sharks and Minnows. A family set up a vast picnic. Babies cried in their carriers from heat and exhaustion and general crankiness. Toddlers cuddled with their parents, too tired to keep swimming, not wanting to quit playing.

It was as if we had resigned ourselves to the coming—what?, change, school year, transition—even while collectively shoving back against it. Like we could sense that the end was nigh and none was ready.

And why should we be? It’s still July. It’s still summer. And I’m not ready yet.

I’m not ready for books, and back to school clothes and routines and change and schedules and seriousness.

I tweeted last week that I was ready for bedtime, at 3 pm.

While this is a silly nod to how the heat and activities of the summer wear me down, my friend Miles tweeted back, “Don’t wish your life away.” Smart guy, that Miles.

But, in my mailbox, catalogs pushing backpacks and sweaters. Sweaters for Pete’s sake. On the TV, sales for pencils and pens. The school websites have their supply lists published. My friends are having uniforms tailored for their kids and labeling textbooks and calculators.

There is this constant crush forward, to be ready and organized and all that. Sure, fine. Be organized and ready. But I don’t want to be done with summer until summer is really done. I have more swimming to do, more books to read, more places to visit with my kids. We have more sleeping in to do (well, they do) and more late night movies to watch. More hanging out in our jammies and hanging out in our swimsuits.

I don’t want to wish the summer away. I’m not ready yet.