sweet southern summer

Yesterday afternoon, I drove down to my parents’ house to spend some quality time tooling around Lake Hamilton on their super 1970s party barge and trying out my Lil’est Sis’s new tube. The boat, picture this if you will, is known as the Disco Barge. It is avocado green and there are some cracks in the fiberglass canopy. It has no seats, and we sit on the worn astroturfed deck in lawn chairs. However, it has a certain something many boats lack. That something is a disco ball. It doesn’t go very fast, but it goes fast enough, and we cruise around the lake, sipping wine out of mason jars, marveling at the large houses, and, these days, occasionally being tugged behind the boat in a very large tube. It’s great fun. As we cruised around the lake, we pointed out our favorite houses, we laughed at the house with the giant, water-spouting marlin statue on its lakefront, which has been for sale for over a year (apparently the marlin isn’t a selling point?), and we even noticed a giant cloud that looked rather like the aftermath of a nuclear explosion.

Later that evening, as I headed out for my hourlong drive home, that thunderboomer was straight ahead. Lightning crackled across its surface like electric fissures, and flashes from deep within lit portions of the cloud. The round yellow face of a full moon shone from just behind the edge of the massive cloud. I rolled my windows down and the air was thick and humid, but refreshing at ten degrees cooler than it had been earlier in the evening, and it hummed with the sounds of cicadas and tree frogs. I let my hand float outside the window, enjoying the resistance created by my possibly too-fast speed on a dark and windy road. I cranked up some Mumford and Sons, because such a night calls for banjos and belting it out. I sang “rain down, rain down on me” as lightning flashed directly ahead.

Sometimes church is wherever you are. Sometimes it’s oh so sweet to be able to go from the home of my youth to the home of my own.

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