It’s that time of the year in Florida when it’s almost painful to go outside—when you try to run from your air-conditioned car to your air-conditioned office building/lunch destination/whatever as quickly as possible; when even the most seasoned Floridians—including the ones like me, who were born here—complain that they never get used to the heat. “It’s hot as balls,” I actually said to my mom yesterday morning, and it’s a testament to how true that statement is that my normally prim mother, who would never say something like that herself, nodded and replied, “It really is.”
Anyway, when it feels like you’re melting the second you step outside, it’s sometimes surprising to look around and notice that not everything else is, too. Thanks to the afternoon and evening thunderstorms we’ve been having lately—par for the course around these parts in the summer—most lawns are a brilliant green, and the crepe myrtle trees are practically throwing a party—their white, pink, fuchsia and lavender blooms waving cheerfully as you drive down the street. I love crepe myrtles; they’re actually one of my favorite plants (we always had a tree or two in our back yard when I was growing up), but I tend to forget about them until this time of year.
I encountered the crepe myrtle above this weekend in Orlando, when I was out running errands with my mom, and something about the pink and the green and the light (oh, the light) felt so summery that I had to stop and take a picture. I’m glad I did, too: It’s nice to take a minute to remember that there’s beauty all around, even when it’s, ahem, hot as balls outside.
Photo: My own.