The pool was greenish and cloudy with a fine coating of dead gnats. In the dark, on the deck, I stepped on the remains of a slug's trail; it wound, dark and wet and fat, across the red wood and down the step onto the cement patio. The power went out at 2am, and I watched the lightning storm, so full of rage it never gave the night sky a chance to be night; so full of rage, it brought down trees and rooftops and cars and people.
But then there were these moments, too: the cheer from the neighborhood when the power kicked back on at noon. A platter of grilled fruit -- pineapple and peaches coated in caramelized sugar, hot from the flames. A clear, blue-er pool where I read half of Summer Sisters, because that's what I do in the pool every summer. B. in the hammock under the shady tree, relaxing in a way I never see him do. My dad on the deck, rockin' out to his iPod Touch (a recent prize) as he read his Kindle Fire (his Father's Day gift). My brother confessing high school indiscretions to my mother.
On the bus ride back to the city, I found $30 in singles someone had tucked in between the seat and the window. Was it some server's nightly earnings? Some runaway's stash? Should I donate it or use it or leave it?
I kept it. It paid for our tickets back home.