With some glorious rain in July, my garden is amazingly green and lush going into the hottest month of the year. And, whoa! What’s this: in the first week of August the temps aren’t expected to top 90 degrees and ample rain is forecast. During the month of July, we have had 4.71 inches of rain, where 4.77 is our normal. But for the year, we are three inches above normal which assures bountiful gardens and crops.

Blessed by such weather at the seven-month mark, August has been and will always be hot, but as the new month blooms this morning, there is little of the lawn burn you usually see at this time of the year. Anybody who has ever farmed by the acre adores studying the weather and what is marvelous is not a one of us experts can do anything about it!

I’ve got a good yield on orchids and onions and let’s see where they’ll best fit:

AN ORCHID to Mayor Tim Kelly for stepping up and showing the city really does care about the county-run schools. There is a great opportunity for better education in our community and the city’s interest can be a Godsend.

AN ONION to the city for allowing the upper half of Ochs Highway up Lookout Mountain to become the worst road in both Chattanooga and in Hamilton County. So, help me, some patches over potholes are four-deep.

AN ORCHID to the belief, “Goodness isn’t hard to find, especially when you’re on the lookout.”

AN ONION to the weather in the western half of the United States where water has never been as precious. Believe this, the drought crisis is very real, and its wide swath is devastating.

AN ORCHID to celebrate the life of John Divine McGee, who was among the kindest and gentlest souls I have ever known in my life. Lucretia Berry is the one who once wrote: “I can grieve the loss of what was, but I know losses make room for gains because Christ’s love leaves no deficits – no empty places.”

AN ONION to the colossal decision to literally open the U.S.-Mexican border where hundreds of thousands have entered the country illegally and will cost Americans billions in welfare dollars. The result will drain our western cities and our overall economy for years.

AN ORCHID for Super Bowl champ Tom Brady who presented a No. 46 Tampa Bay jersey to Donald Trump saying, “I think about the 40 percent of people who still don’t think I won.”

AN ONION to the Olympic Games in Tokyo, where the pall of COVID has eliminated the spectators and a stubborn president of Japan has put pride over common sense. We could have waited another year for a safer venue, and it would have been much more fun.

AN ORCHID to the response of the Hamilton County Department of Health is this new Delta variant of COVID. Experts say it is as contagious as chicken pox but carries a far more ominous result. If you even think you may have the coronavirus, go to a hospital emergency room to confirm it and, if you don’t need to be admitted, you need to begin a drug regime before the case gets worse.

AN ONION to any and all government mandates regarding masks. It is simple: If fully immunized, you don’t need a mask; if not, you do. Based on every statistic, I do not believe school children need masks unless instructed by their parents. Any level of government should not require masking but if employers demand it, follow the company rules, or work somewhere else. That goes for teachers too.

AN ORCHID to put next to the sign in an Amish General Store in St. Ignatius, Montana, that reads, “A father teaches his son more by the example he lives than the advice he gives.”

ONION for the U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan – there will soon be a big check to pay. Evil never sits still.

AN ORCHID to David Hollingsworth, the author of the motivational bestseller, “Get Out The Door!” who claims, “You did not get where you are overnight, and you won’t get where you want to go overnight either. Change takes time … and lasting change takes effort.”

AN ONION to Donald Trump, who attacked some unknown former aides who spoke ill of him: “Some of the stars I produced are actually made of garbage.”

AN ORCHID for a huge uptick in COVID vaccinations due to the ravaging Delta variant … but why did it take a threatening surge for people to grasp what they should have realized months ago. It’s an easy bet that we can’t find one who has endured the disease who is an anti-vaxer. Are you kidding me?

AN ONION for the fact it took Olympic gymnast Simone Biles to have a mental breakdown in Tokyo to ignite a new awareness that our mental well-being is in a desperate need to be addressed in the United States.

AN ORCHID to Olympic gymnast Simone Biles who said, “I believe that some obstacles … work out for the better because God knows that without those, you wouldn’t be as strong as you are.”

AN ONION to the lust of a cruise ship that will begin an around-the-world trip in January 2024. The manifest is so opulent that the minimum cost of a suite, per person, is $73,499. Does it amaze you the cruise was completely booked within short hours the same day it was offered?

AN ORCHID to Jerry Gilbert, who owned the tallest horse in America before “Big Jake” died recently at age 20. Interviewed by a reporter, Jerry was melancholy: “It’s very quiet. The other horses know.”

AN ONION to the powers in Seoul, Korea, who have just banned gymnasiums and exercise venues from playing music over 120 beats a minute. Music, of course, is a great stimulant to exercise but in Seoul some idiot believes that faster music will make participants breathe harder and, thus, raise the risk of transmitting the coronavirus. So, help me that’s true!

Enjoy a wonderful August …

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