Great Googly-moogly, it is so freakin' HUMID here today!
I'll have to watch the news and see what the relative humidity is, but it feels like about 172%. Ha! Hey, are you kidding me? It's only 49%! Of course, I guess that's pretty high. My pal Myra in Arizona is probably going, "49%?! UGH!" Hee hee! Tomorrow looks like a repeat of today, with a lovely cooldown after that.
Around noon, I was pruning one of our redbud trees (more about that in a moment), and believe me, this was not heavy work. Just lopping off some branches and carting them back to the burn pile. The sweat was just rolling down my face, dripping onto my glasses, what have you.
Don't I paint an alluring picture?
Anyhoo, you'd think with this sun and humidity, we'd be popping some thunderstorms, but not so far. Right now, I'd appreciate a little rain to cool things off a bit!
As for pruning the redbud...we have two redbuds that we planted a couple of years ago, and I mentioned the other day that the things are growing at an unbelievable rate. It's almost scary, like alien pods or something. The larger one grew so fast and so much that when we got rain yesterday, it weighed down the new branches so much that it looked like that entire portion of the tree was going to break off. So I got out there today and started lopping. I saw where it had started to split a tiny bit at the crook of the tree, so I took a LOT off--I had to get that weight off of it until it could grow bigger and stronger and bear the weight. Grow, little redbud, grow tall and strong!
After I was done and I started looking at it, I almost made myself sick with worry that I'd cut off too much. I kept telling myself, "You HAD to, it was getting ready to break!" and then I'd look again and feel like crying at how much I'd taken off. I was sitting out on the deck reading, with the tree just to my left, and every so often, I'd take another peek and feel ill all over again. I fretted about this the entire afternoon.
Ken got home around 2:45 PM (more about THAT in a moment!) and before he could even walk into the house, I was on the deck asking him if the tree looked okay. He stood for a moment and said, "Oh wow..." and I thought, "Oh crap..." and then he said, "Yeah, it looks fine!" [big sigh of relief on my part!] He said later that with the way this thing is growing, he doesn't think pruning it now will really damage it. I sure hope not, because it was kind of traumatic for me to cut off these branches with their big, beautiful heart-shaped leaves, and if I contribute to this tree's death, I will be devastated.
Maybe I shouldn't take things QUITE so much to heart, eh?
Yeah, Ken got home early today because he is driving down to corporate headquarters in Columbus (Ohio) tonight. He's having dinner with his boss tonight, then has meetings all day tomorrow, then will drive to Dayton to see the kids. He'll be back Saturday night, but in the meantime, I'm flying solo for a couple of days (except for Sheeba, who I'm sure will prove to be an excellent and interesting companion), and missing him already. I can probably find something to occupy my time, though!
Oh wait--I already have! Reading, of course. I read the latest issue of Time this morning, then got started (finally!) on the book that Dr. Will sent to me, Refrigerator Rights. I'm really liking it so far, and will put up a review when I'm done. It's definitely making me think! I should have no problem finishing this one before we're into July and it's time for our next book club book, Ironweed by William Kennedy.
Speaking of reading, a couple of you responded to my entry about Obama's first book (thanks for your comments, as always!) wondering about his reaction to meeting his Kenyan relatives for the first time. I'm sorry I didn't write about that in the original post, but I wasn't kidding when I said my brain was starting to hurt. Bea mentioned something in her comment about how mind-boggling it is to think of how huge our world is...but at the same time, in many ways it's very small. (I'm paraphrasing, but that was the gist of it.) It really is awe-inspiring to think of it--at least for me--and that was exactly part of what I was feeling when I wrote that. Sometimes it hurts when I think too hard! Ha!
So to expand a little on Obama's first visit to Kenya, I got the impression that it was quite a culture shock for him. While his early years were spent in Indonesia, his youth was spent in Hawaii, and his young adulthood found him in Chicago and at Harvard. While he found much to love about the country and its beauty and much goodness in his relatives, he was also confronted with corrupt politicians, service workers who treat tourists better than native Kenyans, and social mores still in use that had to be jarringly anachronistic for a thoroughly modern man. Add to that some family members who expected to be "taken care of" with money and gifts from their "rich" American cousin. A few years after his first visit there, one of the cousins he mentioned died of AIDS.
If any of you have read it, or if you read it in the future, be sure to drop me a line and let me know what you thought. I felt it gave me some insight into struggles that I can't really begin to imagine or to fully understand. In the interest of equal time, I have also read one of John McCain's books, Faith of my Fathers, and enjoyed it very much. Regardless of what you think about his politics, he served his country well and at great cost.
Holy crap! I just looked him--McCain--up, and we share a birthday! August 29th! That's cool! The only other person I've known of up until now who I shared a birthday with was Michael Jackson, and that's not something I go around talking about a lot. <grin>