Summertime is here this week. I can see it in the color of the green forest around me. In spring, the foliage starts as a bright, almost eye-popping green. But now, it’s settled in as a green that’s just a bit less dramatic. The dull green of August is still some time away, and today and for weeks yet to come the green will be the pretty, deep shade of summer.
Here, the weather has been far cooler than usual. Not a single day hit 90 in June, though one or two came close. I’m sure I’ll pay for that later in the season, but today I’m not complaining. If summers stayed in the 70-80 degree range, I wouldn’t mind them at all.
Perhaps because of the cooler temperatures, the season is different from other summers in other ways, too. Fireflies look less common to me. Oh, they are there, but the little twinklers are fewer than I recall. The wild raspberries that I so look forward to were few and far between, too. The ones I did find (and that were left over after allowing my camp kids to eat them) were certainly good and sweet, but only served to whet my appetite for more.
Each season has its slight differences from average. These are the ones I’ve noticed for this year. And that’s how it goes. One year is hotter, one cooler, one dry, the next wet. I believe that if any one weather pattern repeated itself for several years, some of these subtle differences would become the new normal. But usually it doesn’t work that way. At least it doesn’t work that way so that I can see.
Instead, the year-to-year weather differences highlight or suppress little pieces of the greenery that go into making a forest. The forest is still a forest, still an eastern deciduous forest, but little pieces change from year to year. I like seeing those tiny changes around the cabin. I know that next year or the next, some other little piece of the forest will have its day, while another will not.