It’s hot. Have a gin and tonic.

Hot Summer Nights

There are some who might say, perhaps rightly so, that I’m just a malcontent. And there’s no use trying to make or keep me happy. I might be one of those people who might, perhaps rightly so, describe myself as such.

However, I’ve been right proud of myself.

In spite of vexatious challenges, I have, mostly, kept last winter’s vow that I would not complain about the heat.

Now it was touch and go here for a couple of days, but I neutralized the pressure of pent-up whining by talking about the pent-up whining and what might be the imminent danger of my spontaneously combusting.

Still and all, other than a few Lawsy, Miz Scarlett, it sure be hot, I have not let the Inner Brat run free with her tantrums.

I hadn't noticed it left.

It is hot. It’s all over the news. Millions of us have become very learned about the heat index which for those of you not sweltering is summer’s version of wind chill. [I have been cogitating on whether damp and cold feels colder than dry and cold and wondering if there’s a corresponding cold index and also wondering about wind chill as it relates to stagnant, putrefying air versus summer breezes, but Lawsy, Miz Scarlett it be too hot for heavy thinking.]

The primary reason I haven’t volleyed a heat-induced rant on the topic of heat is that the Pied-a-Terre has air conditioning.

The sounds and sights of summer nights.

Now back to that malcontent descriptor. I have lived for so long now without air conditioning in my abode, I find it disconcerting. With air conditioning, I lose the white noise of fans and the flutter of my hair. I lose the fragrance of night-blooming lovelies. But mostly, it’s the sound of summer nights that I miss. In the cool confines of the apartment, I cannot hear the peepers or the breeze ruffling the tree canopies or the cat knocking over the pot of mint (again). It’s unnatural. And sort of creepy.

While it’s true, air conditioning at the apartment has probably kept me sane, I have very much enjoyed the past few days here at the barn. As long as one doesn’t move too fast, wears a minimum of clothes, and keeps an iced drink at hand at all times, it really hasn’t been that bad.

The iced drink thing leads me to my next topic. Chef Boy R’ Mine has made a liar out of me again. It’s a long boring story, but years ago I tried some alcoholic libations made with gin. Ack. Spit. Yuck! [gag]

Tangueray 10

Online, somewhere, somebody said something like, “gin is like sipping last year’s Christmas tree through rubbing alcohol.” Prior to reading that analogy, I ran around saying gin tastes like juniper-infused kerosene. I like the Christmas tree thing better – there’s pathos embedded that kerosene doesn’t invoke.

Child of Mine has been waxing rhapsodic about gin and fine wines for a time now. The sommelier at his club has been sharing some Truly Great Vin and, once in awhile (far too infrequently), I get to partake of some wines that I can’t envision ever being able to afford.

The gin thing I pooh-poohed as youthful indiscretion.

T10 and Lime

On his latest trip home, The Boy came bearing Tanqueray 10. We were here at The Barn. There was a heat index of 115F. He was cooking. We were talking. One thing led to another and I was fishing rocks glasses out of the china cabinet. [I’m a stickler for the right glass for the drink.]

I was prepared to be a good sport.

Oh my. OH MY.

I was astonished. I’m not much for mixed drinks – particularly those involving carbonated mixers. I had, once again, to admit I hadn’t known what I was talking about when I threw around descriptors like kerosene.

Chef Boy R’ Mine tells me that Hendricks gin is even better and that if I try it, I must garnish it with cucumber rather than lime. The cucumber thing rather intrigued me given that one of my favorite summer meals is tomato-cucumber-avocado salad with fresh ground pepper and sea salt.

Yes. I do like a little tomato, cucumber and avocado with my salt and pepper.

Still and all, I was kind of puzzled. I honestly don’t like juniper which is the flavoring that makes gin gin. I went web-surfing and found a host of folks, including the Christmas tree guy, that weren’t fond of traditional gin, but liked T-10.

It seems this “premium” gin is made not only with juniper, but also with Florida oranges, Mexican limes, grapefruits and coriander. Mixed with tonic, these beautiful botanicals combine with the quinine to protect me from malaria and the quinine also acts as an analgesic and anti-inflammatory. As I ponder whether to have a third gin and tonic, I tell myself it’s medicinal.

Lime and Cucumber

So. I’ve had two gin and tonics this evening and am pondering a third. One with lime. And one with lime and cucumber. The latter is a real winner. It’s pretty in the glass, it’s tasty on the tongue, and it’s refreshing like a scented summer breeze in the cool of the evening after a blazing hot day.

[Aw, hell, hang on, it’s not like it takes a long time to make one of these things. And it is medicinal.]

I still haven’t whined.

Damn, this is a fine drink.

The Mantra of My Life

For years, I’ve said, “More time, more time, more time,” is the mantra of my life. But upon recent contemplation, I’ve had a Eureka! moment and now know why “more time, more time, more time” should NOT be the mantra of my life.

I feel stupid and silly to just now be realizing this.

Mantra’s root meaning centers on that which protects the mind. My mind is not protected by scurrying about chanting Moretimemoretimemoretime like the White Rabbit on cocaine.

“More time, more time, more time” might describe the great need of my life – for decades now – but pleading endlessly for it has not worked. In the tradition of affirmations, I should be muttering “I have all the time I need.”

Or so they say.

An empty closet! Hah! So there!

I don’t think I could say, “I have all the time I need” and not break into hysteria-tinged laughter which would, no doubt, defeat any power the phrase had in terms of positive thinking.

Here’s what I know: I’ve been running at 90 miles an hour for weeks now and I’m not even close to caught up. On anything. The hurrieder I go, the behinder I get. (I’m not sure who said that and I’m too exhausted to look it up.)

For all of my behindedness, I am getting some things accomplished. I scheduled recreation this weekend and I scheduled chores. I completed all the recreation, but I’m woefully behind on chores.

Friday, Terrific Trudy came home from the vet.  Her surgery was successful in that the vet thinks he got all of the cancer.  While the incision(s) looked horrible, she acted as if she felt okay.

I also spent one-on-one time with my best friend. She and I killed a pizza and discussed life in general over glasses of wine.

On Saturday, I puttered in the garden weeding and planting all the little darlings I bought last weekend. Just before heading in to shower, I moved the houseplants outside and put them in the ground. (You should hear them all giggle when I do that. They get so excited – it’s like a summer vacation camping trip as far as they’re concerned.)

After showering, HMOKeefe and I headed to Charleston for our first date night as a couple who lives together. We had dinner with friends at the Tidewater and then ambled over to see Saint Stephen’s Dream: A Space Opera. Dinner and the performance were spectacular.


Mission Accomplished!

Today, HMOKeefe and I did (alert the press) empty the little closet and begin moving his togs into it. He no longer is living out of a suitcase in the guest room. After the closet triumph, I ran around in a White Rabbit on Cocaine Meets June Cleaver frenzy and vacuumed, scrubbed, laundered, dusted, sorted, scooted, corralled, set-up, tore-down and dejunked.

Alas. All the crap that was in the little closet is now spread all over the guest room. If I were a different person I might be tempted to say I have too many pieces of footwear.  But we all know that I am never ever, not ever, no way Jose going to say something that silly.

It’s just after midnight – technically Monday already.

OK. Maybe a few too many pairs of shoes.

I still have to shower and figure out what I’m wearing tomorrow. Put in another load of laundry. Give Trudy her meds.


I swear. If I could just get caught up, I could stay caught up. But way too much life keeps happening. Still and all, these are the good old days. I think. No. I’m sure of it.

Perhaps that’s my mantra – These Are the Good, Old Days.

In any event, it’s now my earworm.