I have this very intense love for Arkansas in the summer. I love the humidity, the way you walk outside, even late in the evening, and immediately your clothes stick to you and sweat beads form at the base of your neck. I love the sound of hundreds of bugs, thick and loud in the lush, green trees. I love driving around at night with the windows down, feeling the hot air rush by. I like tank tops, sundresses, sandals, and having a reason to wear sunglasses all day long.
I do miss the beach, though. The one truly awesome thing that the valley had going for it was it's proximity to the beach. Long summer days spent with your toes baking in the burning hot sand, your hair dry and unmanageable, drinking lukewarm water to try and stay hydrated. But it was worth it, every uncomfortable second. For the glorious nights, eating fresh seafood, drinking frozen daiquiri's, walking along the strip and listening to the sounds of happy people.
And yet despite all of that, I've always had this desire to live somewhere cold. Particularly Maine. I think my mother instilled that in me, she's always talked about having a cottage on the coast in Maine, and now I want that too. (I also read a lot of books that were set in Maine.) Two years ago, before Josh and I moved here, one of the other places I was considering (well, besides Portland, Maine) was Ithaca, New York. Not exactly cottage-on-the-coast, but still the recipient of long, harsh, white winters.
I guess maybe it's because I really love experiences and adventures. I grew up in a place where, even on the coldest day of winter, you would still wear a t-shirt and flip-flops. I didn't see snow until I was 16 and my mom and I went to Pittsburgh over our winter break. Even then it was leftover snow that was already on the ground - no snow fell during the time we were there. So while I can't say I'll ever reach a threshold of experiences with hot days, I do feel like I'm lacking experiences in the cold/snow.
This past Christmas we had about 8 inches fall, and despite the fact that we lost electricity for two days, and I had to change three times throughout the evening because snow kept falling and I kept ending up soaked, it was amazing and I loved every second of it. I stood in it, ate it, jumped in it, threw it at everyone and everything I possibly could, and missed it when it finally melted. I would say that I like extremes, but I love fall just as much. The changing leaves, the crisp evenings that follow warm mellow days...wearing tights, sweaters, and boots.
I don't know. I love it all. I really and truly feel like I can (and do!) appreciate whatever the weather throws at me. I know for a fact, though, that I couldn't live anywhere that has long stretches of time where there's no sun - even if it was balanced by times where there was no darkness, that is the one thing I couldn't handle. I need the sun, just like I need the moon and the stars.
That was kind of random, huh?
Man, my knee has been hurting for the past week, and it's making me really mad. I don't remember any one incident that could have caused it, it was more of a gradual pain that came on over a couple of days, and now it hurts really bad sometimes, but not at all other times. It's weird times, too, like I can't sleep in the position I'm used to, because it hurts, and I can't sit with my leg tucked under me, and if I put it up on the foot-rest while I'm watching TV, I have to keep it straight - any time I twist it sideways even slightly, it hurts. But today I did my kettle bell swings with no problem. Squats hurt if I go all the way down, but otherwise, anything that keeps it straight seems to be painless. I just don't know what to do. Stupid knee.
The only other problem I have is my collar bone. I cracked it years ago when a fridge fell on me (just...don't even ask) and never got it set, and the other day while we were outside playing baseball I sort of aggravated it. It's so annoying! It also has weird things that will make it hurt. So, again, I can still work out, but can't do other normal stuff like look back and up at the same time. Ugh.
Maybe if I just keep my work-outs light (because swinging a 20 lb kettle bell is light, right?) then my body will chill out.
Whatever. I'm going to bed.