Thursday, June 26, 2008

O Solo Me-oh


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>


mereel2005 said...

I didn't read Obama's book (don't plan to) but I can relate to the experence. I went throught the same culure shock when I went to Morocco, similiar experneces with the people I met. While could not find family (though family traces back to Fez) Going to another counrty, into a diferent culture is an exciting/frgihtening/ eye opening experence.

mpnaz58 said...

Are you kidding...its been between 107-114F here the last few days!  But hey, our monsoons are kicking in and we actually got rain today.  Hadn't rained since 1972!  Just kidding of course, but dang its been hot.  Now with this rain, it'll not only be HOT, but HUMID too!  Hey, its summertime :)
xoxo ~Myra

deshelestraci said...

I had to add my 2 cents. 49% humidity is amazingly dry around here!  I would have been very happy with that!

buckoclown said...

Hope your Little Red Doggy keeps you content while I am gone :o)

bgilmore725 said...

Hi Beth! We have several redbuds growing in our woods... they grow fast. I don't think the pruning you did will hurt it. My husband has pruned several trees, and they looked severely pruned... I'd look at the tree and say "Are you sure you didn't cut off too much," and he'd just grin because he knew better than I, and he knew I always ask that question. "Nah, it'll come back. You'll see." and then in the spring, wow! it was hard to believe that he'd cut anything from it the way it would grow back. He's pruned many of our trees and shrubs... and not even because a branch was broken. Thanks for continuing the story on Obama... I still want to read his book. A great story I've just read is The Shack by William Young... it's a jolting book, powerful images of forgiveness and redemption... I will probably do an entry about it. I could hardly put it down once I started it, and finished it in three days. THanks for joining me in the vigil for Barry. Bea

markonit said...

... I think one of the times ANYONE looks their most attractive, is after a good effort in working outside their home ... for me, if I were Ken, seeing you after you did such an admirable job ... WOULD HAVE DONE IT ...

... interesting about Barack's visit to Kenya ... that is something that never changes, whenever you 'go back' when it is thought that you are from 'somewhere' ... now, I have to read it, and John McCain's book ..!

... I was already going to read it, because of a review of some of what it contains, but now I am going to check it out before I leave here today ..!

queeniemart said...

AH HA, now i know your bday.....goodie.
Wow, Columbus and Dayton....lots of Ohio for Ken. We have had vicious storms here this week. I have a tree in my front yard that i LOVE....and it is slowly dying and when and if we have to have it taken out, i will have to move. So, i know what you mean about caring about a tree.

rdautumnsage said...

The humidity is good for nothing short of a headache. It's rained almost every day non-stop for a couple weeks now. When and if I ever get outside I have alot of yard work to do. Nice thing about Doc being home during the days over the summer is, I can put him to work too (winks). You've been cracking me up with the comments you left for Ken in his journal. We are now onto car #2 this one made it to our garage for a look over. But <---not liking the sound of that word. It does have a few issues, fixable ones. Our mechanic says otherwise it's a great vehicle and our money would be well invested. Now it's down to a debate across the table on whether the company will fix said "buts" and lower price or not. At this point I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Doc is doing the haggling and he's running late he has a gig in another hour...hmmmmm we shall see what the outcome is...(hugs)Indigo

jmoqueen said...

It's very hot and humid over here too!!  Mind you the wind is blowing over here but it's still hot :(  which is not nice..............Glad the cutting went ok.  Hope Ken's okay too xx