Summertime Sadness: I hope not as I take my son on some world travels
Last year, the summer came and went by so quickly. It was all one big dark blur. It started off sunny and full of opportunities and ended in a frenzy of worry where I knew I had to work on a major funding grant application that would ostensibly save a lot of staff positions. While that process started off last summer, that grant bore fruit just this winter. Thus the winter has been one long time of discontent. While I got to celebrate my son’s fifth birthday last summer while out on a cruise, I had to still think of that grant application. While I got to go to Hawaii –my happy place- last summer for a psychology conference, I also had to contend with the beginning of a bout of chronic pain that is still with me today. I guess I had a bit of that Summertime Sadness that Lana del Rey sang about repeatedly on my Ipod. I felt that it was a prolonged Cruel Summer as Bananarama noted way back in the 1980s.
I have to admit that to me it feels like New Year’s eve was just a few weeks back. However, we are 96 days into the 2014 year. This day in 1896, Athens opened the first modern-day Olympic Games which is predominantly associated with summer. I am having a bit of a hard time adjusting to the fact that we are now surely in the midst of spring and I must start planning my son’s summer activities as well as his 6th birthday which he wants to celebrate at Chuck E Cheese’s this year. The upcoming summer is starting to seem like a bit of a nightmare. I already have four business trips lined up for the summer (including Miami again, Atlanta again, and Portland, Oregon) and we are still months away. The one business trip I really want to take-which is a trip to Australia-may be really difficult to pull off.
In terms of my personal travels, I only have seven states left before I can join the 50-state club; meaning I will have spent time (at least a day or hotel night) in all 50 states. I am hoping to make it to Alaska this upcoming summer so that I then only have six states left to be part of that 50-state club. However, before I can reach that milestone there is a lot of work, business travel and products to deliver. I think I am feeling the summertime sadness already.
As I look out my back door, I see that the flowers are starting to bloom and the cats are stalking their prey with care and merry. The winter has been dark, bitter and cold. Yet, I am reminded of John Steinbeck’s quote “What good is the warmth of summer, without the cold of winter to give it sweetness.” Perhaps because the winter has been such a polar vortex, the summer will be grand and full of atmospheric and interpersonal warmth. I do have my son’s birthday to look forward to as he continues to grow into the person he wishes to be. Every summer is a blessing. I get to celebrate the day my son came into the world and hopefully take him on some great summer travel adventures as I continue to expand his world view.
“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”
― F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby
Inspired by the Daily Prompt of In the Summertime
other thoughts on summertime