Monday, August 25, 2014

August is the Sunday of Summer

August is the Sunday of summer. A friend quoted this to me this afternoon, when we were sitting outside, having lunch on a deck overlooking the inner harbor. We watched boats motoring in and out and a man floating in an inner tube. Even though I had my camera with me, I felt too laid back to pull it out and take a shot. We both knew it was a great shot, but I couldn't muster the energy to take it. Sunday. A day of rest, perhaps, but also a day of lazing away time.

I do not believe this is the end of summer. The weather has been too perfect to believe that it could come to an end. Even the brisk tang to the air that greets me on my walk in the morning at six o'clock disappears by the time I get back home, an hour later, when the sun is in my eyes and I feel warm from a robust stride through the neighborhood.

Today I had plans for things I would get done, and I did get through the first part of my list--I wrote my 1500 words on my current WIP, and thought about it throughout the day, coming up with a title that pleased me and recognizing what the next scene would be. But the rest of the day, from noon on, surprised me. Instead of the lunch planned with a friend, I moved from one unexpected event to the next. We went to lunch at a new place we wanted to try but the first restaurant was closed, so we moved on to another one, again not one of our usual places. We stopped to visit a gallery owner on our way to another gallery.

We detoured down a lane to a beach, and passed kayaks and rowboats, lined up along the path for
another day. We strolled the beach where the sun glistened on the water, reminding us of why Gloucester has long been known among artists for its amazing and captivating light. I took a few pictures, of the shore, of an old schooner out for a sail, of little boats cutting in among those moored. My friend collected shells, driftwood, and seaweed for crafts projects. A woman came in from a swim, and later another came with a dog for a short walk.

We walked on and stopped at a gallery that was unexpectedly closed, but we knew the people at the next gallery, and stopped there. My friend chatted, and I viewed three floors of contemporary art that made me want to stand and stare for hours on end. I discovered new
artists and thought about how much I like certain images--a woman reading a book or looking at a painting. And then the owners told us stories about the artists, wonderful tales that opened a window into who they were as people, the kind of work they did, and what Rocky Neck had been like in past years. I learned a bit about restoration, and the many steps involved in recovering a long neglected painting. It was hard to believe that the beautiful young woman reading her book inside a gold frame could have been covered in dust and grime for decades.

Throughout the afternoon my friend and I swapped stories, joked, and admitted how surprising retirement was turning out to be. The day was wonderful, liberating, and something we couldn't have done just a year ago.

Today was our Sunday. Thanks, Carol.


  1. That's "Joab" at State of the Art Gallery on Rocky Neck. Sharon and Roger are long time friends and great people. I love August and this one has been extraordinary.

  2. Just about to send you a note Susan to thank you for your willingness to be open to serendipity and a day of free floating. Your energy and productivity are a true inspiration and you've captured beautifully the heart of the afternoon and our lovely visit to Brenda's as well.

  3. This has been a wonderful month for all of us, and I treasure all that we've done together--a summer of serendipity.