The dog days of summer are upon us, but they grow shorter each night as the shadows of autumn encroach. These weeks and those immediately around Christmas are the slowest time of the beer calendar; all the summer beers are old hat, but the sun holds off the hearty cool-weather releases. We sit--probably on our verandas and porches--and wait. We know the changes are coming, but somehow in the warmth of days, we can pretend summer still stretches out before us, promisingly.
While those of easy circumstances sit, however, I toil. For reasons that now seem naive, I decided to paint my house this summer. I looked at the small structure and relatively intact surface (only the west and south walls were peeling) and thought: no problem. After I painted our previous house ten years ago, I swore I'd never paint another. But, walking around this wee lovely, I thought again. I'll save some money and do it myself.
Well. Turns out the house is not small: it is at least seven miles long and fourteen stories high. During the phase of scraping, I found that the surface was less intact than I suspected; like pulling a loose thread on a sweater, once you take scraper to a peeling wall, you don't stop until the whole thing is wearing its birthday suit. Time bends and shortens; I appear to make fine progress until I look at the clock and see a whole day has screamed by.
The days shorten, the house widens. And I keep drinking less beer, and visiting fewer pubs, than I would like.