It's predicted to be in the mid nineties today. That ten-degree drop is going to feel like an arctic blast after the last couple of days. I know there are hotter places in the world, and I don't care. When I'm hot, I whine. Down in the barn, sweat trickles down my back and drips from my eyelashes. There's no way to rush a goat or the process, so it's an hour and a half in the sauna. Trying to get ready for Pete's visit, just walking down the hallway will pop a sweat, so it's do a little, sit a lot. I keep a bag of seedless grapes in the freezer and take out a few throughout the day. Eaten while frozen, each little grape-cicle is like a bite of sorbet, cool and refreshing but without the calories. Bessie Anne and I both went for a dip in the pool in the afternoon. I guess while Pete and Jake are here, we'll all have to take turns; it was pretty crowded with just the two of us.
It took me back to when I was a kid. It seems I've come full circle. My "pool" then was my mother's big galvanized wash tub out in the back yard. Mother used that tub and a scrubbing board when there were just a few things to wash. I was fourteen years old before she got an automatic washing machine. She used a machine that sat out on the service porch with rollers to squeeze out the water. The tub had to be filled manually, but it did have paddles that operated with electricity. It's a good thing I was familiar with that washer, because I had the same kind when I had my first baby. Handmade diapers from lengths of flannel. Fill the tub, wash the diapers. Run them through the wringer. Drain the soapy water and refill the tub with clear water. Rinse the diapers and wring them out again. My mother told me that "good mothers" rinsed diapers five times, and God knows I wanted to be a good mother. Doing laundry took a whole day. On rainy days, our apartment looked like a flannel forest, drying diapers festooned everywhere. I don't take washing machines or dryers for granted, that's for sure. But you can't sit in one to cool off on a hot day.