I spent most of yesterday in an air-conditioned car riding to and from air-conditioned Astoria with my art-quiltin' STASH buddies. It was a welcome respite from Portland's heat wave. Tuesday was a record-breaking 102; temps have gradually moderated down into the high 80s. But still: HOT.
Last night, after it cooled off a bit, Chef Jerub prepared a lovely dinner of grilled chicken and veggie skewers, served over rice with a side of sauteed greens. We'd finished eating and were watching a Jerry Lee Lewis tribute concert on the PVR, when we heard what sounded like thunder. Strange; there was no rain in the forecast. We paused Jerry Lee and came upstairs to check out the scene: More thunder, lightning, and finally a steady downpour that went on for an hour or more. Several of our neighbors were out on the sidewalk, too, or sitting on their front steps. We talked for a while, illuminated by flashes of lightning, enjoying the mild summer storm.
The plants seem to've appreciated it, too, after all these days of artificial watering. Several of the grasses are flowering, all but one of the transplanted rose bushes (rose sticks, really) are leafing out, the ground covers are spreading. Some of the plantings are actually starting to touch each other, yay.
Our Sea Ranch friends Bill and Claire visited last weekend, and bought us a carnivorous pitcher plant (sarracenia) at Saturday Market. Its requirements are completely counterintuitive: it wants a nutrition-free growing medium, since it gets its nourishment from the insects it eats, and, as a bog native, as little drainage as possible. It seems happy so far, in a pot in the garden. We're resisting the impulse to name it Audrey.