The dogs are barking in the particular way that warns of bear, though it’s hard to tell if it’s just a whiff after the fact or an out-an-out sighting. The city’s mowers are doing their suburban Zamboni dance down the hill; my neighbor power washes his house. The first faraway firework pops and bangs punctuate the scene.
It’s hot. Too hot to go out tonight, though the women’s pro soccer team has its last game downtown. Some soulful music on the speakers—Bill Frisell, Monk, Ali Farka Toure, James Brown’s “Suffering” —and whatever’s left in the fridge for dinner. Maybe some of those plantains we cooked up the other night, maybe something from the freezer.
After all the maddening news of the last few weeks, I crave a quiet night with family. A call back to my friend whose beloved dog was seriously hurt in a freak accident. Commiseration. Small comforts. The slow turn of a fan an antidote to this thick heat. Letting life be hard, and rich, and challenging, and rewarding, and confusing, and maddening. And hot.
The dogs have gone in. The bear, no doubt, stalks down in the gulley, searching out a small rivulet in which to lie down.