1. The sounds of kids in a pool. Mine are old enough that I don’t have to eagle eye them when they’re splashing about in the back yard, but I still enjoy the sound of it. It used to be noodles and submarine toys, now it’s volleyball and frisbee games. The dog gets in the act too. In summer, Surfer Guy doesn’t complain about all the canine fur in the filter!
2. The smell of meat on the grill. I live in SoCal, so this is a year-round method of cooking, but summer adds its own spice. Hard to beat lime-marinated chicken breasts, but in the end, not sure anything is better than the smell of hot dogs.
3. Summer fruit on the tongue. Let’s argue the merits of peaches, plums, and apricots. Can we throw avocados in? (Though they’re great and available year round.) We have new fruit trees in pots after years of struggling with some in the ground that did not make it. Plums are luscious, peaches not in yet. But for real summer eating, it’s got to be watermelon. Thank you, the genius who came up with seedless. And those small, round ones. I could drown in that flavor!
4. Fourth of July parades. Where I grew up there was a biggie on the Fourth. My uncle would park his truck on the route the night before and then we’d go watch the next day. Shriners on little bikes. Tiny girls throwing batons. Horses in silver get-up! You can’t do better than a marching band playing something patriotic.
5. The feel of sand beneath your feet. Here in SoCal we have many varieties, from the silty smooth stuff, to the more grainy variety that feels like corn meal. When Son1 was little, he hated the sensation of it against his bare toes, but today he likes nothing better than to play volleyball on the beach barefoot. Summer means the grit of it everywhere: in the car, in the shower, but who cares? It means we’ve been having fun.
Bonus! Surfer Guy and I stayed up way too late last night listening to summer songs (I’m building a play list for my summer-set books, first titled BEACH HOUSE NO. 9) and sun-and-fun music is another summer fave. There’s Katy Perry’s “California Gurls,” Don Henley’s “The Boys of Summer,” anything by The Beach Boys. For a little sweet melancholy, try “California Promises,” a Steve Goodman tune best covered by Jimmy Buffett.
Do you have a favorite thing about summer? Feel free to suggest a summer song for my playlist!