at summer’s end


i love the annual tradition of doing these summer’s end posts – i think they’re a great way to catch readers up on what’s been happening lately around here as well as a good time for reflection. 

normally i would do this post right before the official start of autumn, but let’s face it: autumn has come early this year. last year we were graced by record warm temperatures and a beautiful indian summer (babí léto) which brought with it many september garden parties, beer garden nights, and hikes well into the autumn season. this year, as if like clockwork, autumn graced us on the first day of september – my first full day back in the czech republic. it is what it is!


what did you do this summer?

we kicked off summer with picnics, day trips, and lovely garden parties. we traveled (sans dog for the first time) to northwest czech republic to see a new-to-me town and go to KVIFF (karlovy vary international film festival) and stayed… for the first time… in the middle of town in the colonnade area! after returning, the heat of the summer finally hit and we stayed with friends in a sweet cottage in the countryside near a stream which was more than idyllic! summer camps came and went, and then to the u.s. for the next five weeks visiting four states. i know i kind of sound like a jerk when i say it wasn’t long enough… but i could have used another few weeks for sure!


what was the one thing you were looking forward to this summer?

i think i made it fairly obvious: the beach! the ocean! spending as much time in these special places on my hometown island as possible… while eating as much seafood as i could handle. the photo above strongly reminds me of the smell of sea air, cedar, and ripening blackberries. i love to take advantage of those light summer nights as i am just not a dark/winter person at all.

what did you miss the most this summer?

thankfully because i went back home, i didn’t have much to miss, but there are a few friends i didn’t get around to seeing that i wish i could have. but it was a very full and happy season.


best breakfast of the summer?

there were some good ones, but i have waited five years for the one at señor moose – one of my absolute favorites that i missed during my last time back in seattle. two words: horchata latte.


song of the summer?

i know everyone and their mother would say despacito as it clearly was the hot song this year, but it wasn’t my favorite. there wasn’t a really definitive song this summer but “crash” by against me! was on a lot of the time (but not during any of my flights because superstition).


any festivals/plays/art exhibitions?

KVIFF was (again) our major festival this summer, and we made it to fiesta del sol in chicago which is a huge mexican street party with incredible food (naturally) and a kexp show at the mural on a warm sunny august evening.


best dinner?

fried prawns and oysters at a cabana-style restaurant in my island hometown with my mother and alex after our big camping trip, accompanied by icy cold pilsners and a view of the marina. perfect!


best drink?

i cannot tell you how many bottles of kombucha i drank this summer being back in the states. so many. i have missed it.


funniest memory of the summer?

during my friend julie’s wedding in bend, oregon, at the reception, it was time for the garter toss. a huge group of guys huddled together to try to catch it as it was thrown, but the garter ended up flying past this group and hit the bride’s father who happened to be just walking by. with the comedic timing of an absolute professional, he threw it at some guy nearby and made a beeline for the other side of the room without looking back. (photo via)

we also enjoyed catching up with alex’s octogenarian grandma in michigan and hearing her stories from when his grandfather was trying to woo her… one of them involved heaving a huge rock in his grandma’s driveway for when she returned home from a date out with another boy. persistence will get you a lot of places, turns out.


favorite garment?

probably this poncho (worn while watching north-american-solar-eclipse-2017-woo) i wore it the whole time i was back in washington, and even took it back with me. it belonged to my mother as a teenager and as i recall, she used to go to football games and the ilk wearing it. i love clothes and accessories with a story.


best swimming?

i feel like i didn’t really go swimming swimming this summer (besides the one time at the city pool) but a definitely floated around a bit at this beautiful mountain lake (baker lake). the weather was not quite as warm as i would like (which is a cornerstone of my swimming requirements) but you can’t go to a lake like this in the summer and not go in!


what do you wish for next summer?

so much already, actually! i wish to go on an actual vacation next summer. not a trip. somewhere where i will spend my days in a gorgeous setting (somewhere in europe) lazily, eating and drinking well, and going every day or so to a market or a winery. swimming in a private pool. that is what i have in mind! hint: thinking about exploring one of our ancestral homelands that we’ve barely dipped a toe into or the number one summer vacation spot of czechs. (time will tell!)

but it’s not all lazy days. i also wish to have a month next summer to go somewhere beloved and spend a month there working on our craft – for me, that would be language study. for alex, that would be writing… but both wishes have a common thread: traveling, but not traveling. to be more stationary. after a summer of two countries, four states, seven flights, and many hours in the car or on the train, the anti-trip will be the trip of next summer, i predict.

what was the highlight of your summer? do you have any wishes for next summer or things that you would repeat?

ps, past ‘at summer’s end’ collections: 2016 & 2015

this post is a part of wanderful wednesday with van, lauren, isabel & marcella.