So far, it's been a crackling hot summer in Seattle. June was nearly the driest June on record. It's my least favorite weather. I tolerate it, but just barely. Some days, the sun and the humidity and the sweating and chafing, the chipper sun-lovers and the paunchy shirtless old guys get to me, and then, quietly cursing it all, I retreat to a cool basement, run the fan on high, and remember that six months ago the city was paralyzed by snow.
Today I walked a new route and tried to find something beautiful about this hot spell. It wasn't easy. The graffiti looked greasy and unimaginative. A bunch of drunks cooed at the dog, and the female one said Hi pretty doggy, to me, then laughed with so little conviction that it could have been crying. Tourists fussed with patio umbrellas at a gelato place, trying to make more shade. The grass in the parking strips looked like crispy straw, the dried blond heads like starbursts against the cracked dirt.
Forty minutes in, I gave up. The dog was slinking along and panting, tail drooping. On the way back, we passed the drunks again. One fell to his knees. I remember you, doggy. C'mere. My dog shrank away from his waving arms. Sorry, I said. He's hot and he's on his way to get a drink. Still on his knees, the drunk guy said, Ha ha, so am I.