It was 78 degrees Fahrenheit yesterday (a record high, apparently, with another record high expected today). To the sounds of children whizzing down the hill in front of my house on bikes and a neighbor tossing a football with her son, I alternated between hanging my Christmas lights and thinning my lettuces, visions of my Christmas Day salad dancing in my head.
Back and forth. Climb ladder, string lights. Kneel, weed, dig, plant. Cover bushes with lights, plug in, stand back and check. Drag red buckets of shower and kitchen water outside.
"The lights waste water," my daughter said. Hmmmm. That report on how the electric company is the biggest user of water clearly got through to her.
"Well, that's why we waited until December 9," I answered. "And we'll be sure to turn them off at night. And we don't have all that many lights."
Rationalization? Or should we skip holiday lights now? Is nothing sacred?
And then there's the whole "why is it so warm in December?" issue. My friend emailed me that he can barely enjoy the weather because it's just another sign of nature gone crazy.
I had flung the windows up, opened the umbrella over the table on the patio, pulled out my summer sandals and a tank top, and even tossed some chicken on the grill. I found myself humming this holiday favorite, adapted for a glorious summer day in December here in Atlanta:
Oh, the weather outside's delightful, And the grill is cooking a biteful, So as long as there's no chance of snow, Let it grow, let it grow, let it grow!
Or perhaps, for just one day, one day when I take a little holiday break from the pressing issues of the world, let it go, let it go, let it go.