Thursday, June 12, 2014

Ten reasons why summer ISN'T my favorite season, and five reasons why I love it anyway


  1. I don't handle heat very well - I got heat-exaustion once when I was 16, and sun-poisoning when I was 14, and ever since then it's been a battle between fear of being that sick again and avoiding being that sick again. I like a brisk snow day so much more. I'm not built for heat, with my pasty skin and predominantly Irish and Welsh heritage. I did NOT inherit a love of heat or a constitution to handle it from my Cuban grandmother.
  2. Mosquitoes - I'm apparently super-tasty to them, and no matter how much garlic I eat or bug spray I use or citronella I burn, the biters still get me. All of the biters, if we get down to it--mosquitoes, fleas, ants, anything that likes to chomp a person.
  3. Sunburn - The afore-mentioned pasty skin. I freckle, but I don't tan, which means I burn SO EASILY IT'S SCARY. Like, I have a thing on my phone that warns me when the sun index goes over 8 because I know if it does, I burn in about five minutes and I need to find shade. I also have a family history of skin cancer and I hate the feel of sunscreen on my everything, so basically staying out of the sun is the best bet.
  4. All my show are off the air - I'm sure I've mentioned before that I watch A Lot Of TV, and that I Don't Do Well With Cliffhangers. It means that the summer basically lacks the schedule of shows I watch, so I gradually stop knowing what day of the week it is, AND I spend whole weeks and months worrying about what will happen to characters I like. It's silly, but it's A Thing, and it's not something I like.
  5. Bright sunlight gives me headaches and eye-wrinkles - I'm really blind. Like, without my glasses, I can see somewhere between four and six inches before it's all just colored blobs and no sense of distance or depth. This means I can't wear sunglasses unless they're prescription, which I can almost never afford, AND which are usually really poor examples of shading. Non-prescription glasses can go way dark and make it a feasible thing for super-bright southern days, but you add some actual lensing to the glass and all of a sudden it has to be just barely brown? Lame. If I have to choose seeing things and squinting or not squinting and being blind anyway, I usually choose squinting...which gives me headaches all summer long.
  6. Humidity - Bad for my skin, my hair, my lungs, my patience...basically just bad.
  7. Tourists - There's a difference between 'people who travel somewhere new' and 'tourists', and it has to do with obnoxiousness levels. I try to be the first, and all the people who drive poorly, tip poorly, talk too loud, don't allow for things like this is not your home, and so on, are the second.
  8. Extra work hours - Only a narrow range of humans get summers off, and I've never been in that range since I started working. I've also never been in that range of people who work because it's their life; my life is what I'm working to support, and I never thought work should take up a bigger portion of my waking hours than life. Previously, I worked in retail and food service, and that is entirely dependent on people coming in, so hours doubled or tripled over summer months. Now, I'm a babysitter, and when the kids are out of school, the work doubles or triples in the same amount of hours. I love those kids, but man, they're a handful.
  9. Everyone talking about how much they love it - It's fine if you love summer--most people do, it seems--but by about now each year, mid-June or so, I've seen so many articles and spots on TV and segments on talk show and bits on the news all about how wonderful summer is if you have skin that tans, that I just get sick of it. It's like it's accepted that when it's summer you talk about how wonderful summer is, and you aren't allowed to mention how awful extreme heat can be.
  10. I look really awful in hats and shorts - I can pull off a flapper cloche, but that's not a summer hat. I also prefer to wear my hair in high messy buns, which get in the way of all but the worst visor-caps. And my legs are too jiggly and round for shorts unless I don't mind them creeping up on me, which I do.

But...
  1. Fresh corn - Lord and Lady, I love a fresh corn cob. I wait all spring for them to come in at the start of summer. Fresh all sorts of things, actually--strawberries, watermelon, peaches and nectarines and cherries, avocados and mangoes that don't cost $4 each...
  2. The beach - How terrible is it that I hate extreme and prolonged exposure to sunlight, but I love the beach? I love it so much that I'll willingly go outside in a swimsuit, wearing SPF5000, and sit under that glowing day-ball for hours just to splash in the water and pick up shells.
  3. The garden - This is the best time of year for the garden. The time when the most stuff is leafing, flowering, AND fruiting, and you can start eating the stuff you've put in a whole spring's worth of work for! It's also a time when it's pretty easy, because rain and sunlight and the plants themselves are doing most of the work.
  4. Travel-time - Summer is when holiday packages are cheapest, and when most people seem to catch up to my standard level of let's go somewhere. It's also when the weather is most amenable to travel, and when (because of the extra work) money seems to be easiest, so it's the time to Go Places.
  5. More time to read - The flip side of the lack of shows I watch is that there are whole evening hours that don't have claims on them, and I always get so many more books read over the summer than during the seasons.
What are your favorite and least-favorite things about Summer?
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