Parking in the Shade

Our summers are long and hot.  Lots of accomodations need to be made in order to function reasonably well in this climate.  The biggest accomodation is air conditioning.  Everything is air conditioned.  As in everything.  Cars, hotels, homes, businesses, shopping centers, even the ballpark.  Everything is air conditioned.  But what about our cars?  They are air conditioned while we are in them driving around but what about when they are parked? 

I grew up wanting a garage.  We never had one.  We lived in duplexes or in single family homes but in the north where protection from snow and the cold are much more important than protection from heat.  Nevertheless, we never had a garage.  My husband and I bought our first house when we were in our late 20's and it had a very small single car garage.  The house was built in the 1930's but the garage was added later.  Maybe at a time when cars were smaller?  I guess.

Lots of people use their garages for storage and there isn't any room left for cars.  When we had a garage we always parked our cars inside.  Now we live with a carport so the cars have shade but no walls.  The carport is great protection from the extremes of hot and cold and from the blazing sun, but what about when we are out and about?

Anyone who lives with our type of summer knows that the best place to park in a parking lot is under the trees.  It doesn't make any difference if the trees are messy and drop leaves or twigs or sap or flowers on the car.  Those are the parking spots that fill up first.  Even if it means you have to walk twice as far to wherever you're going.  You always park under the trees.


All this discussion brings me to this point.  I have a little Kawasaki mule.  It's what I drive around the property.  I haul feed and hay this way.  I drive up to check on the upper pastures in the mule.  This is how we move pretty much anything that needs to be moved between the house, my studio, my husband's workshop and office.  Around the house we have lots of trees so in between trips that's where the mule sits.  Under the trees.

But what about mid trip?  I park in front of the main door of the barn.  When I go out to feed, both the morning and the afternoon, this area is in the shade.  I park by the llamas' pasture when I feed them and in front of the pony's pasture when I feed him.  In front of the pony's pasture is always in the sun morning and evening.  But for the llama's pasture I usually have a choice.  I can park in the sun or in the shade.

Most of the year I park in the shade - as any rational Texan would.  But for a few brief weeks and months I park in the sun on purpose.  Our short fall/winter/spring, when it is chilly and sometimes downright cold, I park in the sun.  We are not quite to that point in the change of seasons.  But almost.