Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Summer Ceremonies

Of all the annual events in the summertime the Ceremony of the First Tomato is my favorite. About four days ago I picked the first ripe tomato from the garden. It was perfect in every way: good color, without a blemish and firmly round to the touch. It was time for the best BLT sandwich you've ever had. I took my best serrated knife and sliced it with the confidence that comes from trust in Mother Nature. I don't like to rush this event. Beaven and I enjoyed our lunch to the fullest. It was magnificent.

I want to savor that moment because I'm about to embark on another summer ceremony not nearly as satisfying. The call to the Air Conditioning repair people.

Almost the minute the van pulled out of the church parking lot taking my man away for a week's mission trip to Mexico our AC crapped out.

Beaven always has a handle on home maintenance. And Air-conditioning is one of his specialties. He's known this field since he was young starting with the year he installed a walk-in cooler for the family bakery. He had just gotten out of the Air Force where he had taken a correspondence course in Air-conditioning and Refrigeration. Then, after he retired. one of the first things he did was take three or four classes in the same subject. Did he intend to get a job as an AC repairman? Heavens, no--he was just interested in how they work. On paper he's an expert. In practice, he's a rabid consummer of summer comfort and knows just what repair company to call to come fix the damned thing and how to tell if they're ripping you off.

So I sit here getting ready to make the phone call solo. I will just have to trust the repairman and write the check by myself.

I worried for a minute about how uncomfortable I would be here in late June without air-conditioning. Then I remembered we have the "guest house." This is a pretty big storage building we bought and converted to sleeping quarters for guests plus a dandy hobby shop for Beaven. We tried to call is a Ham Shack because he's got all his ham radio stuff in there but people thought this meant we were smoking hams in it. So now we call it either the hobby shop or guest house, depending on what we're using it for. But the main thing is that it has a window AC unit.

This week it's my Writer's Grotto. The reason I didn't go on the mission trip is that I've been finishing the book I'm writing on mission. At some point I had to stop going on mission trips long enough to write about them. I moved the laptop out there when it started getting uncomfortable. I ended sleeping out there last night because it is so much cooler than the house. In fact, I may just move out there permanently. It really is a lot cooler than our bedroom since we have so many windows it's impossible to keep cool in the summer and warm in the winter.

My little temporary home is cozy. It's nice and cool. We've insulated it so well that with the windows closed I can't hear the outside world or tell if it day or night. I've been typing my fingers off in there. I had to come into the house to post this blog because I haven't figured out how he's connected to the internet in there.

I gotta go anyway to call the repair people. Wish me luck. The annual Ceremony of the Broken Air-Conditioning can be a bitch if you're not in the right frame of mind. I'll need to find my happy place.

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