Opinion

Make sure to take time to soak up summer — Boise’s ‘Sweet Spot’

Summer is the Boise Sweet Spot on the calendar. Here, Brinna Denoble with Bubbletime! creates bubbles for children before Boise’s 2016 Fourth of July fireworks celebration.
Summer is the Boise Sweet Spot on the calendar. Here, Brinna Denoble with Bubbletime! creates bubbles for children before Boise’s 2016 Fourth of July fireworks celebration.

Every now and then we have to stop and allow ourselves to be smitten by our surroundings here in Boise. I can’t help but do that during what I call the Boise Sweet Spot on the calendar, which we are enjoying right now.

It sneaks up on us sometime in June and slips away long about the time the kids are heading back to school, and when our gardens really begin to produce all those salsa ingredients: tubs of tomatoes, pecks of peppers and handfulls of fragrant herbs that pack a half-life.

I welcome the Sweet Spot now, especially, because the political discussions and problems we face are vexing, all-consuming and never-ending if we let them be — kind of like placing a humidifier and a de-humidifier in the same room, as a comedian once posited, and watching them fight it out.

Now, I’ve only been here four years and a few months, but that’s long enough to have discovered when the aforementioned Sweet Spot has taken hold on me, and, I’d guess, on you.

It is that magical moment when daylight lingers so long we can fit in early morning or late evening recess, a time when the charms of the Valley and the Foothills are the low-hanging fruit of our lives. They beckon and we gladly answer.

It’s that season when some powerful force I do not understand lures me out of bed in time to hit the Natatorium pool deck by 6:30 a.m. for a lap swim a couple of mornings per week — followed by whatever is cooking for breakfast at the Roosevelt Market and a cup of Dawson Taylor coffee, while observing customers play cards and commiserate about what’s in the newspaper that morning.

The other day I ordered the quiche based on the first ingredient mentioned — “bacon.” I was pleased and surprised as the gal behind the counter included fresh banana slices, luscious blueberries and pineapple-slice triangles in my carryout box. That, I thought, is what Boise is in summer: a gentle succession of added value unfolding at places and during fun events that seem endless for a season.

I swore I was going to eat the quiche filling and leave the crust behind — but who can resist, after waking, semi-conscious, and then swimming hundreds of yards in the pool toward my summer-ending goal of a mile? Apparently, not me. Rationalizing that the activity and the fruit would balance out the crusty carb-karma, I succumbed.

This summer Sweet Spot will include such highlights as the Mighty Sequoia’s change of station this weekend — which prompts me to ask: Why did the sequoia cross the road? Please send answers to this riddle to rehlert@idahostatesman.com

During my first summer here, I was looped in to a Fourth of July celebration put on by seven sisters and their extended families in a delightful Warm Springs neighborhood. I had never met any of them, but the welcoming spirit of Boise surfaces during the summer Sweet Spot. I knew someone who knew someone in this seven-sisters-of-separation scenario, and now I am annually put to work as a chief hot-dog griller.

At some point this summer’s Sweet Spot will be book-ended, and I rather suspect that will come Aug. 21, the time of the Great 2017 Eclipse that has us so transfixed.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves, or allow too much of the real world to dampen our enthusiasm for this wonderful place. Should the stuff of Washington attempt to invade your Sweet Spot, I recommend you take two scoops from Delsa’s or Goody’s and don’t call me in the morning.

Robert Ehlert: 208-377-6437, @IDS_HelloIdaho

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