Dear Summer,

I think I owe you an apology.

I’ve only just realized how much I’ve been taking you for granted. For years, I’ve just expected you to be there in that warm, inviting way of yours. Your long evenings and your hazy mornings went largely unappreciated by me.

But, Summer, this year I have fallen back in love with your charms.

We had such a wonderful childhood together, you and me. Granted, you were a little harder on us desert kids, but I think you were just toughening us up for the future and helping us become more creative. I have distinct memories of sitting in front of a box floor fan, popsicle in hand, feet pressed against the front of it, cooling myself from the bottom up.

Summer in Barstow 1975


And you forced us to keep towels in our automobiles to protect our backsides from the scorching punishment you inflicted on our pleather seats.

Enjoying you in the Mojave Desert was a little harder for those of us with no air conditioning in our houses. We had “swamp coolers”. I can still hear the whoosh of the air and the wet blanket smell of that crazy contraption. To this day, I still want to say “turn on the cooler” in reference to air conditioning.

As it turns out, a cooler is something you put ice in and take to the beach. We called that an “ice chest”. But I digress.

Spending long lazy days with you in the desert heat and swimming in the warm desert nights was so idyllic. Our time together seemed to stretch out so far in front of me and I thought you and I had all the time in the world. I was smitten.

All the way through college, I awaited your arrival every year with such anticipation. That carefree feeling of no homework, no teachers and nowhere to be was intoxicating. Summer, you know all the best ways to make us love you.

But then adulthood came and I got my first real job. I didn’t get to enjoy you as much as I had in the past and I definitely did not give you the attention you deserved. Oh sure, we had a few happy flings when I lived in Chicago those few years. You had become an enigma to me in those days. Only sending your gorgeous sun my way on rare occasions. I know you were just teasing me and trying to remind me of your charm.

So here we are years later and I’ve finally learned my lesson. I now have children in school and dealing with homework the second time around might be worse than it was the first time. So I’ve fallen back in love with you. Lazy mornings in pajamas, the smell of chlorine and sunscreen, ice cream and popsicles, firing up the grill, no shoes, beach days, family vacations, peaches and plums and watermelons….. wow, is there no limit to your wondrous qualities?

Thanks for always being there Summer. As I went for a run this morning with a symphony of lawnmowers in the distance, I vowed to never take you for granted again. My time with you is precious, just like you are.

Yours truly,

Sunny and Smitten




  1. Diane on June 26, 2012 at 12:34 pm

    The two most beautiful words in the english language, summer evening. Someone else wrote first, but is ti no less true.

  2. Dee on June 26, 2012 at 2:24 pm

    Oh how I miss the days of the swamp cooler being in my room. Having cassette tapes warp on the dash and laying out with nothing but the hose, sun-in and oil. Like you, I appreciate the lazy mornings, revel in the no homework nights and less hectic weekends trying to cram everything in before bedtime Sunday
    night. Enjoy your summer and thanks for the refreshing reminder of how fast we grow up.

  3. annette on June 27, 2012 at 12:28 am

    That was truly like being in a time warp! As a long term desert resident I still turn on the cooler and bake in the car (I believe my leather seats are out to tan MY hide!). My kids are grown so those memories too are becoming part of chapters past…but the dark nights with stars so plentiful and the sound of crickets and the heady perfume of pink oleander and of course, low humidity just keep Summer so special in my desert heart still! Thanks for the wonderful writing DeAnne!!!

    • DeAnne Olguin Williamson on July 3, 2012 at 8:43 am

      This was nice to read Annette. Wishing you another lovely desert summer!

Leave a Comment