Simple pleasures, end-of-summer edition

Ice tea on the balcony

By Caitlin Kelly

Regulars here know this is an ongoing, intermittent series I produce, listing all sorts of small(er) pleasures life offers us, sometimes forgotten or overlooked:

Baking buckles, cobblers and pies with all the fresh berries available.

A very cold, stiff martini — no ice! olives! — consumed, ideally, in one of two places: an elegant hotel bar, like the King Cole Bar at the St. Regis in NYC (if you’ve seen The Devil Wears Prada, a meeting place scene) or dark, hole-in-the-wall (pre-pandemic talking to strangers) dive bar, like the ones I enjoyed years ago in Atlanta and San Francisco.

Swimming in whatever clean, fresh water is available, whether a creek, river, lake, ocean or pool. So delicious on a hot and humid day!

Pool parties! These days, very small ones, outdoors, with fellow vaccinated people.

Corn on the cob.

Huge juicy tomatoes.

Sitting for hours in your wet bathing suit.

Balcony flowers.

Playing cards or dominoes in the shade.

Watching the light (sob!) get lower and longer every day as fall approaches

Fireflies — aka lightning bugs.

Long lazy conversations with friends outdoors, knowing by winter we’ll all be shut inside again, even vaccinated, masked and scared and alone.

Spectacular sunsets.

A jaunty straw sunhat.

Having two vaccinated friends over for a long lunch.

16 thoughts on “Simple pleasures, end-of-summer edition

  1. Monarch butterflies flitting about on the milkweed at Beaver Brook Reservation. Eating tiny black berries that I’ve recently discovered that have tiny pits and a sharp, slightly sweet taste. I don’t know what they are, but they’re good. I’d say about six of them have as much substance as a single smallish blueberry. I find them at Fresh Pond and in Beaver Brook Reservation. The various wildflowers in my yard.

  2. Iced tea…Got any sugar for that? Love the old-style ice cubes. My refrigerator makes the little semicircular ones that dam up your glass. Fortunately it will also crush them.
    You were saying you still may have a few surprises and it would seem that is true. I’m sure I referred to you as a “Dazzling urbanite” at some point in the past and here you are having a dip in the creek. Love it. I hope you guys are still in good shape after the bad weather. Nice to be reading you again.

  3. I was pretty sure about the sugar, it’s a southern thi(a)ng. I have to thank Mel Brooks,, Richard Pryor, Gene Wilder and Cleavon Little for the “Dazzling Urbanite” reference. Great art doesn’t emerge from a vacuum and neither does mine. I’m glad you like dazzling. I like being dazzled so this shows promise. I spent a little time out in the rain last week doing some backyard civil engineering and I made an important discovery: I need a new rain jacket.

      1. That’s my usual strategy but I couldn’t run this time. And I like to hike, so it’s still a good thing for me to have one. The last one (Land’s End) made it twenty five years, so I’m happy with it.

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