Like much of the country, the Ozarks has been in the throes of a heat wave. This time of year the sun seems to surge over the horizon, bursting across the treetops like molten gold. Mornings are no longer still. Birds and squirrels scurry about, determined to get their daily business done before the oppressive heat bears down on the landscape. One of the many feral cats in our neighborhood sits and watches the activity with feigned disinterest that will quickly turn into a tiger’s leap should opportunity present itself.
While our mobile cousins can hide from the worst of the heat, our leafy relatives have no such comfort.They must bear the brunt of the sun’s blaze. Some stand resolute against the blistering sun while others succumb, drooping to the ground in surrender. Yellows and oranges that usually herald the crisp cool days of autumn splatter foliage as plants draw back from the summertime heat.
I suppose it is human nature to consider the very moment we are in as somehow extraordinary. Last summer, we were told, was unusually hot. Yet here we are in the midst of an unusual heat wave once again. Our perception is so subjective. I’m sure I considered summers I spent training horses outside much hotter than those in which I worked inside an office. So how can I tell if my observations are accurate or not? I look it up on a weather service site. Those statistics are really the only way to get an objective comparison.
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