Sunday, August 26, 2018

August Resolutions

“Gardens are not made by singing ‘Oh, how beautiful’ and sitting in the shade.”
Rudyard Kipling

One of the few joys of a flaming hot August in southern Louisiana is the flourishing potted plants on our deck.  Of course, having them flourish means a religious dedication to getting out in the heat to water them.  I haven’t always been so dedicated, but I’ve resolved to water and to sweat, and the pay-off is worth it.  

I haven’t set foot off Bywater Farm in seven days.  I was looking forward to going to church this morning and having lunch with my middle daughter.  But I have some kind of virus, so I’m home again today.  I’m really a home body, but after seven days or so, I’m feeling the effects of cabin fever.  And for me, cabin fever means too much thinking - too much naval gazing.

I wonder why resolutions come to my mind in August?  Aren’t they reserved for January?  Maybe so, but I think it might be a natural result of the stifling August heat.  The mind can’t help but ponder what might make your own life and the world in general a little better.

The fourth commandment says, “Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy.” It was an easier commandment to keep back in the 1950s when I was a child. Stores closed on Sunday. A few drug stores and gas stations were open, but retail stores were closed.  I’d venture to say that some people back then went to church simply because there wasn’t much else to do.
The fourth commandment makes it clear that God doesn’t think it’s good for all seven days in a week to be just alike. But it takes concentration today to make it different.  Few stores close on Sunday and neither does social media, so distractions are everywhere.

I feel another resolution coming on. Social media is full of angst - political posts and depressing news articles about rape, murder, and abductions - not to mention the airing of personal dirty laundry.  I’m too private a person to ever air the personal stuff, but I do make political posts, and I share depressing news stories.  I am resolved to stop making these posts on Sunday.  On Sunday I’ll post cute kittens, uplifting poems, and photos of beautiful scenery.  Maybe I’ll post some creative writing about a fantasy world free of political corruption and mankind’s inhumanity to mankind.  If I was a better person, I’d probably resolve not to make any posts on Sunday, but I have to start somewhere.