Hammock Time

August 10 is a pathetic date to be setting up one’s hammock. Up here in Minnesota, by August 10 the summer is nearly over. But at least I set it up…last year the hammock never saw the sun.

After setting it up, I approached with my arms full—a pillow, a book, a bag of almonds, and a large plastic glass (can a plastic glass still be called a glass?) full of ice-cold Diet Coke.

Confident my hammock-balancing skills were in no way rusty, I got myself settled on the swinging hammock, pillow under my head, food and book at my side, then I dumped half of the ice-cold Diet Coke directly into the hammock. The ice-cold Coke quickly ran to the lowest spot on the hammock, which was located directly beneath my backside.

I looked up at the sky, cursing softly, and watched the fluffy clouds drift by as my jeans absorbed much of the Coke. Finally, I sloshed my way into the house and changed.

I returned with a towel and a bit more respect for the unpredictability of hammocks.

It turned out to be a lovely afternoon. In fact, the farmer saw me from the driveway and in a uncharacteristic move (she’s allergic to leisure) decided to join me. Luckily I’d finished my Diet Coke, so the fact that she nearly tossed me out of the hammock when she sat down wasn’t as serious an event as it might have been.

Long story, short, we spent over an hour just napping on the hammock. Warm breeze, birds overhead, and the occasional quiet snap, which I finally figured out were the seed pods of the nearby carragena, exploding in the heat.

There is something amazing about being in a hammock that you don’t get resting on a sofa or a bed. It’s being held off the ground. It’s being rocked. It’s a way to disconnect, if only for a little while, from everything else you need to do. Negative thoughts and worries aren’t allowed in the Hammock Zone.

So quickly, before summer ends, dig through your attic/garage/basement for your hammock and set it up. If you don’t have one, but your neighbor does, start watching their comings and goings. When they’ve left for a few hours, scoot on over and make yourself comfortable.

As you can see from the photo below, my hammock is a mere ten feet from my office, but it feels like another world.

Hammock time—something everyone needs, but few of us get.

9 thoughts on “

  1. “There is something amazing about being in a hammock that you don’t get resting on a sofa or a bed. It’s being held off the ground. It’s being rocked. It’s a way to disconnect, if only for a little while, from everything else you need to do. Negative thoughts and worries aren’t allowed in the Hammock Zone.”

    Perfect, just perfect. I have long searched for just the right words to express my love of the hammock and why it’s so relaxing. Thank you. The only thing better than a hammock on land is one hung on the deck of sailboat, gently rocking at anchor under the stars with an occasional tropical breeze wafting by. At sea, away from civilization there are so many stars in the night sky that I was often humbled and kept awake for hours at the sheer marvel of it. Hammock Zone indeed.

  2. What am I reading? Oh, I was afraid someone would ask that. I was reading “Sex with Kings,” a book about royal mistresses…. I know, I know…why?

    Research for a novel I’m thinking about writing, which has nothing to do with kings or mistresses, but I needed some idea of how courts functioned back in the day…

    Next up is Diane Ackerman’s book about the brain. (Truth is, I write so I can research!)

  3. Remember that generations of sailors traditionally used canvas hammocks on sailing ships as their bunk; a hammock moves in with the motion of the vessel so you aren’t at risk of being thrown out. Some of the best sleep I’ve ever had was in a hammock hung between the main mast and stern rail…slept like a baby (when I wasn’t kept awake by the stars). Hammocks rule!

  4. we had one on a frame but then then 3 year old son thought it would be fun to post the metal hook bits throught the decking and into the pond…when i finally drain it and clean it out I expect I’ll find them.

    My sister once fell so fast asleep on a hammock that she work up dark and cold and was furious that no one had realised she was still down the garden!

    I always imagine that if you got on a hammock too fast you might spin round and end up lie a boiled sweet, wrapped up in the middle with twists at either end!

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