I hope you ate a peach this summer. This had to be their best year on record. I ate peaches from everywhere: one perfect, supple organic peach from the farmers market, flat little donut peaches from Trader Joe's, delicate white peaches from Costco-- it didn't matter how low on the produce ladder I slid, they were marvelous. I even bought a couple yellow peaches at Ralph's. One turned moldy the next day, ick, but the other: exquisite.
A great peach is transcendent. The gentle fuzz that scratches your tongue right before the sweet juice of flowers and sun rushes in, the way the flesh yeilds to your teeth, easy but firm, how it slowly dissolves down as you begin to chew; is there a better summer lover to be had?
The summer of 2006 was the hottest we've had in a long time. Heat waves punished us all, the blackouts were sweeping. An Inconvenient Truth told of melting ice caps and withering destruction speeding toward us, Manhattan under water and polar bears drowning. I like to think the peaches were our moment of beauty before the fall, the one gift of our foolishness. The sweetest, juiciest peaches are those that linger too long on the branch, in the blistering sun.