Last week I looked at some of the summer activities that are geared towards the younger generation getting active. This week we take a look at the other summer activities that begin to liven up the community.
Probably the best sign that summer has arrived in full force is when the old lawnmowers start getting pulled out from sheds or dug out of garages to be fueled up and oiled for the coming battles against the lawn. Last summer wasn’t terrible since the lack of rain insured the grass and weeds wouldn’t get out of control, but if the previous months were any indication, this summer is going to be a different story.
Cutting grass is one chore which I absolutely detest. I think it is the futility of the work. You spend an hour or so cutting and trimming only to have to repeat the process in a few days. Then on particularly hot, dry days the cloud of dust kicked up by the mower is enough to cover the house, the one next door and the one across the street with a nice film of powdered Georgia red clay.
Which leads to another summer task which provides another set of irritations – washing the car.
Dragging out the hose, finding a bucket and brush and giving the vehicle a good once over isn’t bad. Then as you finish, your neighbor cranks up the mower only to cover the car again with dirt. Then there are the birds.
Sometimes I think birds fly around just looking for some unsuspecting sap to be outside rolling up the hose after finishing washing his car, then gather as many of their feathered friends as possible to make bombing runs across the roof and hood.
This hasn’t been much of a problem since the water restrictions sidelined the suds and bucket routine. However, with the water levels making a comeback it will probably be more likely to recognize my car by its color than as a rolling pile of dirt. Granted that the local laser wash offers a quick service for a fast clean, but six dollars for a halfway wash doesn’t seem very economical. Also the 60 mph glued on bugs always take a little elbow grease to remove.
Summer is not all frustrations because it is the prime time to buy a big bag of Kingsford, wash the rack off and throw some thick, juicy slabs of meat onto the grill. There is something about the smell and sound of meat hitting a hot grill that makes the mouth start to water.
While it was still cold out, I already started finding things for the grill. One in particular I happened across on the internet was called a Bacon Explosion.
The recipe, with photos, is on the BBQ Addicts website at www.bbqaddicts.com. Basically, it is crumbled bacon wrapped in sausage wrapped in strips of bacon with a sauce covering.
With the thoughts of steaks and pork on the grill it wouldn’t be correct to not mention the backyard staples hotdogs and hamburgers. While everyone has his or her own preference on how to make a perfect hamburger, I contest that everything is better with cheese and A1 sauce.
Nothing can ruin a good cookout faster than a sudden summer rain.
Of course the truly dedicated will pull the grill under a shelter and keep on cooking, but heavy rains make a mess of paper plates and paper towels.
One of the truly astounding things about a summer thunderstorm is being able to sit and watch as those deep blue and black clouds roll across the sky coming closer and closer and feeling the air begin to change as the lightning and rain approach. The storm rolls in and can linger or can blow past almost as quickly as it started. I know many people are afraid of storms or the thunder and lightning, but it has always been an amazing thing to witness and one of my favorite moments.
That is what the summer is about, spending time doing something you enjoy after doing the things you have to.
Justin Poole is a reporter for MainStreet News and can be contacted at email@example.com.