I've been keeping myself busy with my books and with my tapes
Every day's been much better since I've slowed my drinking pace
There's no swimming in the bottle it's just some place we all drown
I lost myself in sorrow, lost my confidence in doubt
- Gin Blossoms
It's that time of year again. The dog days of summer have set in. The back to school supplies are in at the grocery store and the college football previews are making their rounds before autumnal tailgates. There's a rustling of autumn winds, carrying with it a whispering breath of departed revelry.
I think back now on the summer almost past. I graduated law school. I embarked upon the first real relationship since the one that devastated me two summers ago. I put the past behind me. I read some good books, but no great ones (possibly the Hemingway biography and Thomas Wolfe's Look Homeward, Angel). I visited the schoolhouse in Canada and felt the cool waters of Lake Huron and the sandy beaches of Grand Bend, Ontario. I saw Back to the Future, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and The Goonies at the old Penn theater in downtown Plymouth. I went to the Toledo Zoo and Cedar Point in Ohio. I was sober for virtually the entire summer, which is a long way away from where I was just a couple months prior. It was a good summer, but not a great one; not the '97 summer of innocence when the Wings won that first Cup, not the Indian summer in the Petoskey woods of '10, but also not the misery of last summer when memories past and whiskey hangovers haunted me.
I can't help but be nostalgic for the end of something. It's not just the end of summer for me. It's the end of something more. As a nine-to-five job awaits me in the Fall, it's the end of the hectic yet free lifestyle of a student. So I want to savor every moment of it. Make the best of it. The to-do list for the last couple weeks of summer:
- Tigers game. Hard to believe this one hasn't happened yet this summer, but two games are on the menu for the next week: Wed v. Minnesota and Tues. v. Oakland. Watching Miguel Cabrera alone has been a reason to remember this summer.
- Listen to a Tigers game on the radio in the backyard under the moonlight and with a bonfire.
- Hike to Newburgh Lake. I used to go here on Monday's last summer when I was hungover, oftentimes avoiding work. It feels like something I need to do, go back and retrieve those memories long gone.
- Walk around Ann Arbor to all the places I lived during college. While depressed, I used to do this what felt like every Sunday while I lived in the apartment that I want to forget forever; it was by far the darkest period of my life. This is something else from my past, though, that I want to go back and retrieve, maybe change the way I remember those walks.
- Wish my baby sister off to college, at Michigan State no less.
- Get to Beaver Creek, the restaraunt my buddies and I have gone to over the summer, one last time. Though those dinners don't often seem like much, it's stuff like that you look back on and remember as the good times later on.
- Michigan football: Michigan Stadium August, 31st.
- Plymouth HS football v. Churchill, September, 13th. Friday Night Lights watching my cousin play to close out the summer.