Our deck has always been The Place for our family and friends to gather. When our son was small, he loved to “overnight” on one of the sofas. We have a pair of them, and the larger is actually a teak wood pallet that I built with a young neighbor some years ago, put wheels on, and had an outdoor mattress made for.
We are perched just above the surrounding tree canopies. To me, it feels like being at the bow of a ship, nestled into the view of Mt. Tamalpais, amongst many, many creamy white pillows. The aged redwood of the rail now blends perfectly into the background. The mountain has many moods, and nature provides an ever-changing canvas of color and shifting light patterns.
Our furnishings have evolved naturally over time. But the intention has never changed: to be totally comfortable outdoors at any hour, to savor the light, the view, and the sounds. Often, as the sun goes down, we hear voices in the distance, and a few little birds. And then, the crickets pipe in, and if the breeze picks up, the leaves all rustle in their distinctive keys.
We hear some maple trees, an enormous oak, and full-blown palm trees planted by a neighbor many years ago. (We have a portable fire pit off to the side, for when there’s a chill in the air.)
And below the deck are our raised planting beds, where the cosmos are in full bloom. (I console myself with the prospect of dahlias when the summer wanes.) We have made our first salads of lettuces from our garden, and the tomatoes and squash are well on their way. A few may be ready for our summer solstice dinner, when we will toast the season.
I love the longer days of May and June— and will start missing them soon.
With gratitude from my perch,