Seasonal somewhere, I’m sure

One of the amusing side effects of living in the Pacific Northwest is that seasonal items in stores that are part of national chains show up at the wrong times.

Every year as May rolls around, outdoor barbecue grills, various kinds of fans, air conditioners, outdoor furniture and related items start appearing in stores. By the first day of June even grocery stores and convenience stores have racks of sunglasses, flip-flips, pool toys, and other hot weather accoutrements everywhere.

The problem is that, statistically, Seattle weather doesn’t switch to a summer pattern until July 12.

Oh, in May we get a couple of weeks where the days are sunny and it warms up, hinting that summer is coming. But the temperatures plunge every night, and it’s merely spring warm in the daytime.

And then comes the infamous June Gloom. It doesn’t actually rain that much in June, but nearly every morning is overcast, cool, and the air feels damp. It’s because every night, as the temperatures drop and the air flow starts coming in from the direction of the Pacific, the entire area is engulfed in a very light fog. The overcast isn’t a cloud layer high up above is, it’s because the light fog extends for about a 1000 feet from the ground. That’s also why it feels very wet all the time as if it has just rained, even though we don’t get very much actual precipitation in June.

While that’s going on, most of us aren’t thinking about backyard barbecue parties, or whether we need to replace that fan that was dying last summer. So most of the seasonal stuff sits there, not being purchased. There’s usually a big flurry of discounts right after the 4th of July, because the poor people at the local retail level are receiving the back-to-school deliveries and being told to get them out on the floor. Except usually our summer weather still hasn’t started, yet.

By the time the weather is compelling many of us to look for sunglasses and replacement fans, there isn’t much to pick from.

I try to anticipate what we’ll be looking for and grab it in June, but I’m frequently wrong. We currently have way more standing fans than we need, for instance, because I incorrectly remembered them dying, when it was actually one of the window fans that was going out. By the time I figured that out, I couldn’t find a proper window-mounting double fan anywhere.

Usually by this time I have some of Halloween decorations in the windows, at least. But for some reason I still haven’t even begun putting away the fans and such. Maybe I should just skip it, and start setting up the Christmas tree.

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About fontfolly

I've loved reading for as long as I can remember. I write fantasy, science fiction, mystery, and nonfiction. For more than 20 years I edited and published an anthropomorphic sci-fi/space opera literary fanzine. I attend and work on the staff for several anthropormorphics, anime, and science fiction conventions. I live near Seattle with my wonderful husband, still completely amazed that he puts up with me at all.

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