Last night I told the world on Facebook that I was attempting to start a backyard campfire on my own, since Jorge's flights in Ft. Lauderdale and Atlanta were both delayed.
I've never been one to pretend to be Caroline Ingalls, but I needed a marshmallow. Or two or fifteen.
So I did the Scouty "kindling" tepee thing (Hey, I've been paying attention) with twigs and dry mulch and got a roaring fire going, and by roaring, I mean BONFIRE. I know it has nothing to do with the Tom Wolfe novel, but all I could say over and over in my head was, "BONFIRE OF THE VANITIES! BONFIRE OF THE VANITIES!"
I minded that behemoth like it was a sleeping bear because I knew Jorge would be so mad if he came home and I had burned down the neighborhood. He's so strict.
So I sat there and read chapters 1 and 2 of Jeremiah, and then a book on running after age 35. (Ha! Try "after 45.")
I also threw in my draft notes of my column which I've been writing. It felt kind of good to watch them burn.
Then I just sat there and stared into the fire.
And then THIS kept going through my head:
And that's when I knew it was time to put out the fire.
It took 5.5 buckets of water to put it out, and when I poured the first one on, millions of white ashes swooshed up into the air and came down like snow or dandruff or psoriasis, all over my head and shoulders and clothes. But the fire fought me, so I had to come back out 4.5 more times and create another Pompei with ashes.
So that's how I ended July, which I loved except when I fell down two nights ago.