Where did the summer go? Sep 07 2015
Tim Kreider on The Summer That Never Was.
I never went to Iceland. I suppose I should say I didn't go to Iceland this summer -- never sounds a little melodramatic, possibly terminal. It's not as if I've died and all hope of ever having gone to Iceland is obviated. But for some reason this missed opportunity is causing me more than the usual, near-toxic level of regret. I've had a free apartment in Reykjavik on offer for several years, and somehow I've never made it there. The owner of the apartment sends me photos of the aurora borealis that break my heart.
This was going to be the summer I finally went. Airfares were cheap. I'd just finished writing a book in May, and for the first time in three years the awful obligation to Work on My Book was not weighing on my soul. The summer looked as wide open and shimmering with possibility as the summers of childhood.
But events conspired against me. I just couldn't afford the flight until some checks I was waiting on arrived, and though all other transactions in the 21st century are conducted electronically and instantaneously, the process of paying writers is apparently still carried out by scriveners and counting-houses and small boys dispatched with shillings in their hands, so by the time I got the money I'd run out of summer.
Summer is almost over, and I feel like I missed it this year. I don't normally feel this way, but I mostly didn't get to spend it in the place or with the people I wanted to. But my kids got a much better summer out of it, so in the end it was well worth it. No regrets. Today, I'm going to the beach with a book, to hopefully recover a little of that summer feeling before fall arrives. I hope you all had happy summers, and I will see you all in a week -- you're in good hands with Tim Carmody until then.