Mr. McGuigan was my sophomore-year high school English teacher. I guess we were to learn English by osmosis because I remember more reading assignments than parsing and participles, but perhaps that is because I liked reading better. We read Silas Marner and I think something by Shakespeare, but a short story by William Fryer Harvey has stayed with me all these years. August Heat is a tale of two men driven to madness by, you guessed it, summer heat. It came to mind yesterday when the thermometer soared here, worse down in the valley.
Running the hose over my head on the way to the barn and again on the way back, with dripping hair sticking out every which way I undoubtedly looked like something that would scare small children and large dogs. So be it. With spray bottle at the ready, it was a day to sit still and binge watch reruns of M.A.S.H. Had company come to the door, I'd probably have given them a couple of squirts and asked them to come back in November. Water in Bess's pool was too hot to bathe her in, so both she and I got soaked with the mist nozzle. Even then, we'd waited until the hose had been in shade long enough. Years ago, when I had the pot-belly pig, Louie, he loved to get rinsed down and cooled off in summer. Until the time I mistakenly squirted him with hot water from a hose that had lain in the sun, that is, and he never forgot getting hurt.
Temperatures in the mid-to-high 90s and into 100s are predicted for the next ten days or so, and it's not even August. Sigh.