Made in the shade.

I remember hearing this expression when I was a youngster – my parents would say “oh ya, they’re doin’ great – they’ve got it made in the shade now.”  I’ll bet it was an expression that a beatnik like Maynard Krebs would have said.  But that saying, just like a lot of other fun, but archaic, expressions back in the day, like declaring someone is “sittin’ pretty” when they are doing well, have gone the way of the VW Bus and Beetle. 

Get set to sweat!

That’s what our weather forecasters told us last week already – well, they got that right!  Today I did not meander the pathways at Council Point Park, but instead I marched through the aisles at Meijer, wending my way around the perimeter of the store enough times to make four miles – any more trips and I might have been arrested for loitering.  I’m only kidding about the loitering of course, because I saw a few other walkers there, and besides, I’ve been shopping at this store since the good old Farmer Jack supermarket closed down suddenly in 2006 and Meijer instantly became my go-to spot for groceries.  I chitchat with many of the clerks while I am there and know several by name, including Barb, the weekday greeter, who is married to the former guard at the building where our office suite is, so we always stop to shoot the breeze.

Speaking of a breeze, there was none this morning, and that’s why I opted for the air conditioning to get in my steps – it was a sultry 75 F (23 C), with a real feel of nearly 80 (26 C), as the humidity was so high.  Just walking from the car through the parking lot left beads of sweat on my brow, so I headed for the big freezers and refrigerated section first, sidling past the frozen sweet peas while gazing longingly at the Klondike Bars. 

We’ve been in this wicked heat wave now for several weeks, but the end of the week will be oppressive – Friday and Saturday are predicted to be 96 F (35 C) with a heat index of 105 F (40 C) and storms both days.  I fear a power outage from electricity overload – it happened last year and I lost my power for a day last June.  I also worry about severe weather, including tornadoes, with this heat.

As to staying cool as a cucumber, it’s pretty difficult whether you are walking on two legs or four. 

If you’re lucky and your father built you a tree house, that’s the perfect venue to stay cool, up amongst the trees and having your parents sending cool drinks and lunch up to your hideaway via a pulley system, as you while away the hours on hot Summer days.  This is the same home I featured a few years ago – they have décor that is homespun and cozy-looking and I’ve complimented the homeowners on their décor several times through the years.  The Dad built this tree house five years ago and I spotlighted it in a blog post.  I had watched its progress over the Summer of 2014.  You can check out that post right here, or see how that work in progress looked in 2014 and how it looks today, all covered in ivy and with many more enhancements – perhaps this is a version of a small house, only up in a tree.

But how do you keep cool if you’re not cocooned in a tree house or in your own air-conditioned home or at work?  I don’t know how the people who work outside do it – I was pretty tuckered out after doing my steps yesterday. 

When it comes to shady things, I aim for the shady side of the Park in this hot weather.  One loop has more trees that are closer to the pathway and in some places form a canopy over the path – whew, it feels good to be in that area, and that is where the most birds and squirrels are as well.

Perhaps a little sit-down was in order.

I might have wanted to have a sit down, but there were a few issues that I could see.

This used to be a park bench and suddenly it was tumbling down; some cement and a few wooden slats are all that remain now. That happened Monday after I left.  It was good for some critter pictures as the squirrels used to run along the top of the bench, or perch nicely while noshing on nuts.

While you could have a sit-down here, the view is nothin’ special.

This bench has been warped like this for as long as I’ve walked at the Park … you could take a load off your feet, but I bet you’d get a sinking feeling, although it’s perfect to perch on if you’re a squirrel.

Speaking of squirrels – how are my peanut pals faring these days?

Last year, I did a post showing the squirrels up in the tree branches.  They looked listless with their tails stretched out like a banner, and all four legs dangling down.  Last week in a post you saw a squirrel stretched out in the shady part of the perimeter path, similarly looking lifeless.

Yesterday I saw one of my furry friends up in a tree, in a similar position – he looked at me as if to say “go away, I want to be alone in my misery” … I took several shots of him.

Then I jiggled the bag of peanuts and told him I was going to leave a little pile at the base of the tree for when he felt better.  I opened the Ziploc bag which I had just filled that morning and a fresh peanut smell wafted through the warm and humid air.  I think he came to life because suddenly he seemed to say:  “I was just stretched out contemplating life and very very hot, but wait … is that peanuts I smell?  Well perhaps I could persuade you to put the peanuts up here next to me on the branch – what say you Linda?”

I stayed awhile to see just how tempting those peanuts were and soon, very slowly, he descended the tree, grabbed a peanut, then scrambled back up to his shady haven.

Stay cool in this sizzling weather, and enjoy treats – especially the ice cream variety!

About lindasschaub

This is my first blog and I enjoy writing each and every post immensely. I started a walking regimen in 2011 and decided to create a blog as a means of memorializing the people, places and things I see on my daily walks. I have always enjoyed people watching, and so my blog is peppered with folks I meet, or reflections of characters I have known through the years. Often something piques my interest, or evokes a pleasant memory from my memory bank, and this becomes a “slice o’ life” blog post that day. I respect and appreciate nature and my interaction with Mother Nature’s gifts is also a common theme. Sometimes the most-ordinary items become fodder for points to ponder over and touch upon. My career has been in the legal field and I have been a legal secretary for over three decades, primarily working in downtown Detroit, and now working from my home. I graduated from Wayne State University with a degree in print journalism in 1978, although I’ve never worked in that field. I like to think this blog is the writer in me finally emerging!! Walking and writing have met and shaken hands and the creative juices are flowing once again in Walkin’, Writin’, Wit & Whimsy – hope you think so too.
This entry was posted in nature, walk and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

49 Responses to Made in the shade.

  1. Uncle Tree says:

    A lovely post, Linda! 🙂 It’s right my my alley.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Uncle Tree says:

      Right up my alley! LoL

      Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Yup I thought of you Keith when I wrote it, because I mentioned the original post once to you – this is the granddaddy of all tree houses I think. One time I saw the Mom sending up a basket on a pulley at the side – that was several years ago. That’s the way to go in this heat, get away from it all – I forgot to see if they have a window A/C!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. We got the heat today. Weekend will be oppressive. Hoping it breaks after that. Looks like your squirrels hope it breaks too!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Ally Bean says:

    Your squirrel photos are a delight. I also like that treehouse– talk about swanky [another word from the past]. It’s hot and humid and raining again right now. I’m finding this summer to be tedious [a timeless word].

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Glad you liked them Ally – they look really wrung out from the heat, just like us humans. I was amazed at how big the treehouse was when he was building it. Yes, swanky was another great word – I can remember my parents referring to cars or houses as swanky. We had our rain early this morning but stormy tomorrow night and beginning Friday we are part of this big heatwave – in Washington, D.C. they will have a heat index of 115 F on Saturday. I hope we have a better handle on the power grid than we did in August of 2003 when so many lost power at the same time. Tedious is a perfect and timeless way, not to mention polite way, to describe this Summer.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Laurie says:

    I never would have thought to get my miles in a supermarket. What an ingenious solution to the heat problem! Your little squirrel friend looks pretty wilted. Maybe you should bring the squirrels some ice cubes for treats rather than peanuts! Pretty hot and humid here in PA too, Linda!

    Liked by 2 people

    • lindasschaub says:

      Yup, I usually do the walk at Meijer when the weather is steamy, and usually that happens in August. I don’t think I’ve ever walked in July, I just tolerate it. It’s a big store, not as big as a Walmart, but it works and I don’t get wilted like my squirrel friends. I think you’re right – ice cubes would cheer them up, especially since I never see squirrels drinking at the Creek so I don’t know where they have a water source unless it is the berries on the trees? I thought we would have it bad this weekend, but Washington, D.C. will have a 115 F heat index on Saturday – yikes! Stay cool – bet you run very early!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. “Maynard Krebs”!, you are revealing your age! 🙂 Furry friends in trees are cooler than bipedal shoppers at department stores.
    That bench is like the U.S. government: “Climate change isn’t real.” and “There is nothing at all wrong with that bench.”

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      You are right Tom – that was a big reveal! Most people associate Bob Denver as Gilligan on “Gilligan’s Island” and the word “beatnik” – haven’t heard it uttered in decades. I hope the squirrels are cool as I felt their misery. Just walking through the parking lot leaves a veil of sweat. I had to seek refuge in the freezer area. You got that analogy right and it made me smile. I guess no one notices that warped bench but me – I sure would notice if I paid for the dedication, just like climate change.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Fred Bailey says:

    Great squirrel mugs!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Joni says:

    What a nice tree house. Do you think any kids use it? Those poor squirrels look beat from the heat. We had a sudden wind swing to the north just before supper, how refreshing, temp dropped about ten degrees, funny thing is it wasn’t even predicted!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. lindasschaub says:

    Same here Joni, but ours didn’t happen until overnight and they never predicted it either. In fact, I put the news on when I got up this morning – we have traffic and weather every 8 minutes on this all-news station – the anchors were talking about how refreshing it was. Apparently it is only 68 degrees this morning, so I can go to the Park, not Meijer today. I don’t like this erratic weather … does your mom have central air or a window air conditioner at her home or does she stay with you during these sweltering days? I know you said before that the stairs are a problem at your house as to your mom. I do worry about these squirrels who do look beat – there are not that many of them right now and I don’t know if they are just timid and won’t come over as willingly to me or whether the heat is just wearing them down. I have not seen Parker in a while and hope he is okay, but I did see Stubby the other day, so he is still there. I’ve not seen the kids in this tree house this year, so maybe they are too old for it? But there were two kids and I did see them using it in the past – they have lots of fun stuff at their house, so I imagine they will leave it up there forever. This is the house where I featured the “fresh flowers” sign and the bike with the flowers in the basket and the old-fashioned flag.

    Like

  9. Rebecca says:

    Great squirrel photos! Yes, this heat must be hard on all the little animals. Most are smart and know how to find cool spots and hunker down. I’m sure the peanuts were much appreciated!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Glad you liked them Rebecca – he was so tuckered out that it was easy to get up close to him without him bolting. I laughed when he smelled the peanuts and was glad to have gotten his picture smelling them. We had an unexpected less-humid morning today and I gave them extra peanuts as I won’t be back to the Park until Monday between the excessive heat and the storms. They were all over the perimeter path this morning enjoying the better temps. There are lots of mulberry trees and bushes and the berries are nearly ripe, so they will have a new treat soon.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Rebecca says:

        I’m also looking forward to the “cool” spell coming on Monday. We have a heat index of 106 degrees here today. My camera fogs up every time I walk outside from the humidity. Makes me really appreciative of my air-conditioning. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        I am looking forward to it too Rebecca – we had three storms yesterday and each one worse than the last one. I held my breath the power would not go out and we have another potentially severe storm later this afternoon/early evening. The storms tomorrow will break the heat and next Wednesday the temps will be in the 50s.
        I guess I will believe it when I see it. I’ve not had the issue with the camera, however I thought of you yesterday as you’ve mentioned that happening with the lens before. I have been walking at the grocery store and yesterday it was extremely humid in the morning. I walked out of the grocery store and my glasses fogged up as it had been very chilly in the store. It was the reverse of walking indoors to the warm house on a cold day. I have to say I have never had the happen in my life.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. John says:

    Amazing pictures of the squirrels!😊 I have actually not seen a singel one this year, but I have not been out so much either. Here is the temperature around 20°C, 68°F and blowing quite much. It´s far from last years summer with temp around 35°C, 95°F every day! The farmers and the animals did not have that easy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Glad you liked those squirrel shots John – the ones where he was sprawled along the branch I think he was so tired that he let me get up close and take pictures of him. Your weather is much more reasonable than ours – the entire midwest and east coast is going to have oppressive weather this weekend – “real feel” of now 110 – 115 degrees F (43 – 45 C) on Saturday. I felt bad for your farmers and their livestock – here, the farmers could not get their corn planted timely since we had so much rain.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. susieshy45 says:

    I see squirrels all the time here and they seem happy and not run down like the one in your picture. I do hope Parker is well and Grady too. I saw a white squirrel in Boston- there, the white squirrel was resting on the tree branch like your squirrel. It was hot in Boston.
    A man fed them cold water from his coffee carrier thing. I am glad you are continuing with the walks. About climate change- I guess its always been there- animals have become extinct or died and new ones have come. I am not really sure that man is entirely responsible for climate change though.
    Susie

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      I am glad you are seeing squirrels now as you did not get to see them before – they will make you smile with their cute antics. I have never seen a white squirrel before – they may not come to the Midwest part of the U.S.? That was nice of the man to give them some water – I wonder what our Park squirrels drink because the Creek looks murky and I have never seen one down there – besides the cement landing where they could have gone is flooded over and has been for a month or more from all that torrential rain in May and then June.
      I do worry especially about the polar bears since I’ve seen some news stories about how, much the ice bergs are melting, especially a few weeks ago when they had record high temps and no fans or A/C units since it never gets hot enough to need one – the polar bears cannot gain access to their food – very sad to watch them, all emaciated, as they walk on fours to the next piece of ice, looking for their next meal.

      Like

  12. AnnMarie R stevens says:

    Miss Linda………………………………….I just love the poses that that that squirrel is making for your camera…………………………..he looks and feels hot………………………it’s so cute…………you are a great photographer!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thanks Ann Marie – I was lucky since that squirrel was so darn wilted from the heat that he did not have a lot of energy so he let me get up close to him. Unfortunately it was shady inside the tree, so he looks a little darker but I knew everyone could feel for him in this heat. Yesterday I walked in the Park as it was just 68 degrees and 56% humidity – not bad at all, and the squirrels were out and about again … they feel this oppressive weather, just as we do. I am not looking forward to this heat wave and will not go out on Saturday, and I am worried about an overload on our energy system today/tomorrow (today especially as office buildings and auto plants,large manufacturing plants will have the air conditioning on and cranked up – I lost power last Summer for a day.

      Like

  13. Great pictures, Linda! Stay cool with the coming heat wave!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thanks Sabine – I understand 15 million people will suffer as a result of this heat dome -that is 2/3rds of the U.S. I don’t plan to walk tomorrow as it will be too oppressive, even in the a.m. – I will walk at the grocery store this morning as we had 80 degrees (real feel of 84) at 5:00 a.m. … we are going to have some thunderstorms as well and I hope they come after the heat of the day when they will be less severe. The heat won’t break until Monday when they say it will be seasonal – that does not help out as to long walks in bigger parks on the weekends. I won’t whine as long as we don’t have severe weather, like tornadoes and thankfully that has not come into the equation yet.

      Liked by 1 person

      • It’s been cool here but is starting to heat up today. Good thing you can walk at the grocery store! We have an indoor mall in the area that has come in handy for that during heatwaves and nonstop heavy rains. Hopefully it won’t be too bad for you, Linda!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Thanks Sabine – I hope not too but we had three storms yesterday and two in the afternoon with torrential rains both times and a lot of thunder and wind. A third one was on the way and I shut down and pulled the plug after I was done at work. I shut off the A/C and put on the fan and went to bad. Our area of surrounding cities, but not mine, were hit hard with the winds gusting and causing trees to fall on power lines and 100,000 were without power. I’m holding my breath for late this afternoon or early evening when the next storm comes through. I am hoping to get a short post in after reading and responding to comments – I am horribly behind in Reader right now due to stormy weather and a computer issue after doing a Windows critical update on Wednesday. The store is great for walking and while there I looked for the Ezekiel bread. I asked where to find it – went there and didn’t see it, so whether the clerk I asked was wrong or they were out (but I didn’t see any spaces it might have been), I don’t know. I was not going to bring it home anyway as I don’t want too much in the fridge in case the power goes out this weekend with all the predicted storms. It is good to go there – didn’t even break a sweat and got nearly five miles in. It was getting busy when I left – better on a weekday.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I hope you weather these storms without an outage, Linda! Grocery stores do get crowded on weekends, but 5 miles is great regardless of where you walked. You can go to the Ezekiel website and check where it’s available near you! Or perhaps they’d order some for you. Have a good rest of the weekend, Linda!

        Liked by 1 person

      • lindasschaub says:

        Thanks Sabine – I try not to shop on weekends since I’ve been working from home, but when it got busier, I stayed in the electronics and health and beauty aids and (unbelievably) back-to-school items and away from the crowds. I know they say all the weather activity is done by 10:00 p.m. – we have a storm approaching slowly now, so I’m hoping to get my post done before it arrives – we are officially at 96 right now, the record is 97.

        Liked by 1 person

  14. Eliza says:

    I’m so glad he came down to you!!!! I’d love to live in such a house. Well, theoretically I’ve always dreamed of it

    Liked by 1 person

  15. What a lovely post and those poor squirrels in this heat! You be careful out there!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Thanks Diane – I feel so bad for them. I am just as glad it was too hot to go to the Park yesterday and today because I would not want to see them like that. I walked at Meijer again yesterday and today – didn’t even break a sweat! Guess you did not take your clients to the Park yesterday – it will be in the 50s Wednesday (they say) (ho hum for what they say sometimes, but they were right this time and we had three storms yesterday – yikes) and one predicted for later. I am going to try and do a post and hopefully catch up in Reader before it arrives.

      Liked by 1 person

  16. one thing I’ve always dreamed of is a house that is partially covered by earth or built into a small hillside. The house would be very cool during a heat wave and warm during the winter! Pulling the earth up over you like a blanket will keep you cool in the summer and warmer during those nasty cold days in Winter!
    Your basement should be cooler. I’d be sleeping down there!
    Great read Linda!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lindasschaub says:

      Glad you liked this story Wayne. That is a good idea – you’d have the best of both worlds all year around. I felt sorry for my little pals and I’ll bet with the oppressive weather today, they are not even venturing this far down in the tree and staying in their nests. I hope they have access to water as I’m not sure the Creek water is good – it looks murky and they say we are to have a severe case of algae bloom at Lake Erie especially, but in all small creeks and rivers as well.

      Like

      • your furry friends would be more than welcome in my oh so cool abode! Of course they have to leave their nuts outside!
        The waters DO (dissolved oxygen) is always lowered in the summer time,but this year sounds like its being stressed even more so. The aquatic residents might be affected. They can’t get a break eh….during the winter the same thing happens but because the ice blocks oxygen from being mixed into the water and during the summer all the oxygen is used up by the plankton blooming!

        Liked by 1 person

  17. lindasschaub says:

    I would tell them – they need a break and the birds too! I will see them tomorrow after the cold front brings some welcome relief and I’ll return there – still too hot and unstable out this morning. Thursday I walked at the Park and because it was not as oppressive they were running all over the walking path and that was a welcome sight after seeing them so listless before.

    A few years it was very bad with the algae bloom as we had a drought and there was no rain for a long time and it was over the entire Creek and Lake Erie was bad and parts of the Detroit River where the current is not high had the algae bloom covering over the entire surface. Some residents in one city went for a walk along the River and found many dead mallards on the shoreline – they drank the water or swam in it, then preened and ingested the algae bloom. You are right about the lack of oxygen first from the ice – I saw all the dead shad fish on the shore. I don’t know about crayfish as I’ve not seen them above the water so I don’t know if they made it not, but the turtles and the bullfrogs also came back. I heard two bullfrogs croaking at one another on Thursday morning. Thank goodness for that as we had a windchill of -45 degrees.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s