Tomorrow, June 21, marks the end of Spring, beginning of Summer. You can read all the details about why that occurs on this site: http://geography.about.com/od/physicalgeography/a/summersolstice.htm and learn a lot about the earth's relationship to the sun. However, rather than get bogged down in the details, I want to reflect on the meaning of Summer from a different perspective. It's a little like remembering what it was as a kid just out of school on the one hand and finding a way to return to that as an adult in later years with time to enjoy it again without work being a dominating presence.
I have had the privilege this past year of working occasionally, very part time, by choice, and that has been and continues to be an interesting life transition. It is also a gift and a blessing. It's not that I am looking for things to do to keep me busy. I have more than enough to keep me engaged, active, entertained and involved. For a quick example, I sit on a local non-profit Board and I am off in about 30 minutes to help move an 8x10 shed from Taos to Abiquiu to store our records and files. The afternoon will be spent cleaning, sorting, mowing, trimming, repairing, and general maintenance on our house, barn, sheds and 6 acres of land. That could be a full time job alone but it's not demanding work although it has numerous requirements. (I never made it back in time to do anything at home this afternoon)
Later this month we will head for Utah for a trip in our motor home and visit one of our 7 children and family and next month I go to Wyoming and join a son-in-law and grandson at a ranch for some fly fishing and other western outdoor activities. We just entertained 20 other family members and guests for lunch this past Sunday and our we are able to enjoy our extended family more often and in more places than previously.
Earlier this month we spent four days on the Conejos River in southern Colorado. Living here in northern New Mexico, in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, makes it easy to appreciate the western landscape and be close to many outdoor activities , enjoying so much of what nature offers on a daily basis from sunrise to sunset and beyond.
So for summer solstice, we celebrate another season of joyful connections with warmer weather, clear blue skies, views over the Chama River to Sierra Negra, and on the pond portal, a view of our own bosque and a few free ranging chickens that supply us with enough fresh eggs to keep us supplied for our needs and an occasional surplus to share with others. The local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) gives us fresh produce grown and consumed locally and the summer is a time of harvest and real taste treats in the kitchen. Summer, for me, is a time to remember good times and re-create them in a different place with many similar experiences of happy occasions with family and friends and the products of land and stream.
I hope you find your own ways to celebrate summer solstice and the next three months prior to the autumnal equinox, another time of anticipation, appreciation, and celebration.