The Heat Is On

It's nearly 100 degrees where I live for the second day in a row.  Growing up in coastal southern Maine, with frequent breezes off the cool ocean, it was rare to have daytime temperatures this high.  Without the backyard swimming pool of my youth or an air conditioner in my home to cool my core, I find myself seeking alternative strategies.

Yesterday -- on the longest day of the year, the summer solstice -- I biked down to a nearby pond in the afternoon to watch American Robins bathing in shallow water and a family of Hooded Mergansers quietly floating in the shade.  Today, while the sun's midday rays are cooking my dinner in a solar reflector oven, I'm watering myself like a robin and relaxing in the shade like a duck.

Common Milkweed (Asclepias syriaca)

As an aside, look for Common Milkweed flowering in open areas.

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