Sunday, July 22, 2007

Perfect weekend II

Can it be possible? Two perfect summer weekends in Chicago? In the same month? In July?

Yes, for yesterday and today were everything a Western-New-Yorker-at-heart like me could want—sunny skies, sometimes with interesting cloud patterns; comfortable temperatures in the 70s/80s; slight breezes; and humidities that don't melt you like the Wicked Witch of the West (unlike the tropical 92 percent earlier in the week). The happiness of great weather made me even more determined not to let the intimidation and threats from Friday ruin my sacred free time, which, alas, passed too quickly.

I spent much of yesterday and today in the garden, writing, reading, dozing off, and watching the two young rabbits as well as a tiny mouse that lives by the pool shower under the walk. I wonder about the visual acuity of mice, because it seems to notice me only if I move. I was relieved to see the second rabbit, the smaller one with the white streak on its forehead, and both together, as I had seen only the other one for about a week. It may be my imagination, but they seem a little less bold lately, and they are getting large as young things do. They are growing up, and I miss the babies they were only a couple of weeks ago.

J. came over today, bearing gifts as he usually does, including a blueberry pancake mix from Oklahoma that is beautifully packaged in a cloth bag tied with ribbon. I plied him with apricot tea from Freehling Pots and Pans, then we sat in the garden and shared mustard and pretzels from Hannah's Bretzel ("twisted and tasty since 1477"). We went to Orly's for a light dinner, then had flower tea in the garden, served in my Fire-King jadeite cups. So civilized.

Fortunately my friends the rabbits made numerous appearances, although they probably tired of our movements and our pursuit of them with his camera. We took a quick walk around Promontory Point, then got his stuff together so he could catch the bus to downtown to make the 8:45 p.m. train. When we came through the garden, we startled a rabbit, who ran straight into the bushes—whence its sibling, equally startled by this sudden incursion, flew out.

Early in the afternoon, before J. arrived, I saw a butterfly alight on one of the evergreens and cautiously walked over to look. I could see only the underside of its wings, which seemed to be a dark powder blue with outlined orange spots around the lower edge. I should get a field guide; I never expected to see different butterflies here.

I hope the weather is like this when I am in Ann Arbor.

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