The great George Gershwin song goes like this: “Summertime and the livin’ is easy.” A well-known lyric from another popular song goes this way: “In the good ole summertime.” Summertime – that time of year right after spring has done its work.
I recall a movie titled, “The Long Hot Summer.” Some summers are long and hot. Some are short and cool. Some summers seem to drag on and on, and are miserably dry, others wet and humid.
And here we are again, on the leading edge of another summer.
I always enjoy that time of year when spring is transitioning into summer. Baby birds have flown their nests. Hardwood trees are fully leafed, and pastures are lush and green. Baby calves seem to be everywhere.
Here are some things I have had the pleasure of viewing just in the last few days:
One early morning while driving on a country road, I saw a flash of movement crossing the highway in front of me. He was of the canine variety, but his speed made him indistinguishable until he was slowed by tall fescue at the road’s edge.
Suddenly, his ears flew up. He had given himself away.
“A red fox!” I whispered under my breath. A sense of incredible satisfaction came over me.
In the last two weeks I have seen three chipmunks – different times, different places. That is quite a feat. You don’t come across those little critters very often.
And when you do see them, they are generally moving – fast. I was so close to one the other day I could see the stripes on his back. They are a wonder of nature, these little speed demons.
Have you ever seen a crow being attacked by a smaller bird? I was privileged to view such an attack only a few days ago. Now that’s a sight! The crow was flying high, and, as usual, he was trying to fly in a straight line. And the little attacker was wearing the crow out – diving and attacking, and attacking again.
In such a situation the crow never seems to be in danger. But his little nemesis certainly gets his point across.
Over the years, I have made many trips back to the Brim Hollow. I have spent many an hour sauntering along the log roads and through the woods where I spent some of my best boyhood days. People don’t “saunter” much anymore. As a matter of fact, you don’t hear the word “saunter” used at all these days. “Saunter,” as defined by Webster, means to walk leisurely or stroll. Summertime is a great time for sauntering.
One particular summer day many years ago, while taking a walk in the Brim Hollow, I stopped to rest. Finding a big rock under a towering oak, I leaned my 410 shotgun up again the tree and I sat down to enjoy the quiet of the woods.
I had been resting for awhile, and had almost dozed off to sleep when suddenly I saw movement no more than 20 feet away from my vantage point.
Without making a sound, a mama bobcat hopped upon the trunk of a downed tree and started down its length. I held my breath, hoping not to give myself away.
Then, as suddenly as she had appeared, a bobcat kitten hopped upon the log behind her — then another kitten — then another. It provided a sight forever frozen in my memory — a mature mother bobcat and three kittens lined up on that log walking in single file. Priceless!
I hope you enjoy your summer. I hope you find “the livin’ easy.”
There is much to be enjoyed in the “good ole summertime.”
Here are a few more things which immediately come to mind – home-grown tomatoes, cold watermelon, a cool swim, a day on the lake, ice-cold lemonade, fresh vegetables (right out of the garden), tired muscles, cookouts, the smell of the air after a rain, and clear, night skies. The list could go on and on.
May I suggest you spend some time sauntering? No telling what you might see!
Jack McCall is a motivational humorist, southern storyteller and author. A native Middle Tennessean, he is recognized on the national stage as a “Certified Speaking Professional.” Email: email@example.com Cell: 615-973-8645; Copyright 2021 by Jack McCall.