Transitioning into Summer is always a unique experience; spring flowers unerect into summer grass, sun reddens eczema on light skin, and children are left to manage what all of this means to them and not the adults around them for the first time. Whether it’s a Summer job or Summer school, productivity heads the summer journey of many, which orchestrates that we simply care. The parameters between children swimming and adults barbequing less than a foot away remind me of a time when care was not so much measured by the things we do, but the people we are with. When care was not measured at all, but rather observed and advised. When care was not an advisory label, but its discretion was defined.
Care: the load this word carries resembles what many bring into the Summer. We desire to greet June with the spontaneity which we imagine 2 months of hot air can produce, but not without the curiosity for the previous 2 months which brought us here. Halfway into a new year is an infrastructure for change, although a change in season does not signify a change in attitude. Sweaters are replaced with swimsuits, but the bodies which fit these seasonable collectibles are still bound to a personality unprepared to change attitude or outfit. Ice melts, and water is wet, only in Summer do we exercise our preference of hot or cold. Children drop their school bags where parents have not laid work bags in a long time, and we prefer to call this: time off. Unloading these bags take a backseat to packing more bags, and we prefer to call this: travel time. The items that we both unload and pack, however, are reflective of where we have already been and where we are going. Uncertainty lies at every door that is opened or closed, but we are certain that this is home: a space penetrated by our desires, attitudes, and personalities. Seasons influence people to find homes away from home, nonetheless, ice melts and water is wet everywhere, thus, children will be children and adults will be adults at any time. All of this matters because we care about our homes and the possibility of what our spaces say about us. And if home is where the heart is, care must still be the compass from which we are compassionate enough to find it in Summer.
Sunshine makes staying inside unattractive, but our wanderings outside are dimmed by increased patrol. Music through sliding rooftops are no longer tolerated without a warrant to search the entire car and the people driving. Neighbors tell each other stories through thin walls, which they do not understand because noise outside windows are more interesting. In which case, street lights have been turned on earlier by a concerned mother’s request that children participate in closely-monitored activities. A child’s only wish that night is to find a place to play, and a mother is in another room with the only prayer that she can find said place. What is learned the next morning is that the relationship between a mother and child may be the only thing keeping a community looking forward to June every year.
Monitoring the first day of Summer reminds me of childhood days when I thought the first of June was Summertime. June 21st injects a travel with time that far outreaches the places we may travel to. Perhaps, we do not so much look forward to Summer, but the month of June because 1 of 12 months does not assume half of what 1 of 4 seasons does. If reflecting on Summer is what you enjoy on June 9th, 12 days of preparing to fulfill other reflections is both a reflection in itself and activity unbeknownst to oneself. Time spent wondering where it went often gives us the audacity to reflect on what we’re doing with it, which at any rate conditions us to plan less, do more.
Wherever you are, whoever you are, and whatever you do, remember care, and above all, care for home.