Well at last the countdown is finally over. Summer is actually here. The sun is shining and, wonder of wonders, people are smiling.
Already we have at least two festivals under our belts and neither of them was rained out. The Gibsons Landing Jazz Festival was sublime this year. Whether under the big tent to protect my unearthly white skin or out in the sun risking adding Christmas red to my winter white self, I loved every minute of the diverse acts I saw. What amazing talent the festival folks find for us every year.
One of my other favourite days went off without a hitch this year, too. July 1 in Sechelt was superb. Like most of the other people in our office, I worked the holiday. And like almost everyone else, I made time for a "parade break" and lunch at Snickett Park. What July 1 would be like without a world-famous (well, maybe Sechelt-famous) Rotary burger boggles the mind. It would be like Christmas without Santa!
Now one of the biggest thrills of summer for me doesn't have a specific date attached to it - namely, the day the new potatoes finally arrive at the Henry Reed produce stand. No gastronomic feast in the world can compare to those babies. Boil them up, slather on the butter and that, my friend, is food fit for a king or, in this case, a queen. Who needs fois gras when you have spuds the texture of velvet?
Just thinking about them is enough to make a grown woman drool.
The best time of the entire year is just around the corner, in my estimation.
Namely, August, and the wonderful weekend that is the yearly writers' festival. This year is no exception. There are treasures galore in store for those who love to read or write. It's like being a big kid and having your mom or dad reading you bedtime stories - except that you get to listen in a comfy pavilion instead of a comfy single bed. And, best of all, after the reading, you can ask questions of the author to your heart's content. And you're not even doing it to postpone the inevitable moment when your eyes will shut for the night.
This year one of my favourite newspaper writers, Daphne Bramham from The Vancouver Sun, will be among the featured authors. I've bought her book, The Secret Lives of Saints. It's a fascinating story, one first championed by the Sunshine Coast's very own Jancis Andrews. And if ever a story needed to see the light of day, it's the story of these men and their harems of young, uneducated women. If you've never been to the writer's festival, do yourself a favour and try it. I guarantee you'll be hooked, and best of all, the price is just right.
And so I say, bring on the sun. The fun has just begun.