The Colors of Summer

Labor Day has come and gone, marking the end of the season and the start of those lingering Indian summer days.  Summer has begun to release its grip, the shadows of the light are changing and the nights are finally cooling.  A heatwave completely enveloped Provence this summer, arriving in early June, lying like a thick blanket over the countryside through much of August.  It was hot, some days stifling hot.  We became shade seekers, with the days cast around the hours of the sun we found peace in dim light behind closed shutters.  The Provençal sunshine is relentless, illuminating the days in profound brightness and blurring the focus between the the haze of the sun and what seems to be reality.  It is during these summer months that Provence falls captive to a brighter, harsher hue.  The heat can be intense, usually dry and still, except for those days filled with the howling Mistral, effectively forcing life and us to take a slower pace.  The days like us move slowly and the hours seem to melt away.  The heat lingers, steadily crisping the green grasses and drying the meadows, that by the end of this season the landscape seems parched for days of rain.  And yet.  The colors of summer shine right through...