It's been years, longer than I can remember, since I really enjoyed an evening.
Strike that. It's been years since I really enjoyed a quiet, star-filled, Summer evening. I've just been too busy to notice. How horrible is that? I used to lay out in my parent's backyard and stare up at the night sky. There were nights that we'd go swimming in the dark, with only the moon and the lights from the windows of the house to light the yard.
A couple of nights ago, I was bringing some recyclables out to the recycling bin. The girls were all asleep, and I was just finishing cleaning the kitchen. Suddenly, I noticed flashing lights, and for a moment, I was confused. I thought that maybe the killer heat we'd had all day had finally done me in and given me a migraine. But then I realized that a little flash of light was about a foot away from me, and I jumped. I felt like a fool for letting a lightning bug scare the crap out of me.
As soon as I realized what it was, I came down from the porch and onto the driveway. What a familiar feeling that enveloped me, all of a sudden. It was still hot... in the low 80's after 10:00 PM because the heat was so bad during the day. It was muggy and humid, and you could tell even away from the street lights that there were clouds in the sky. As I moved towards my backyard, I noticed that our backyard, and those of our neighbors, was flickering with the lights of hundreds of lightning bugs. It was almost like seeing stars winking in and out, right in front of me.
The street was quiet, and this feeling, this calmness, was filled with nothingness and peace and a bit of exhilaration. It felt so familiar. I took a chance and looked up at the dark sky, and I was pleasantly surprised to see that there were less clouds than I thought, and I could actually see some stars. And then the feeling was complete. The only thing that would've made it perfect would have been floating on a raft and Manny being with me.