New York City to Short Hills, New Jersey, to New York City, August 21, 2016

★★★ The air was heavy in the bedroom with the broken air conditioner, and outside noise had blared in through the window all night. Big piled-up white clouds sent dramatically contrasting patches of shade and brightness over the landscape. The highway was dry and clear. More clouds came, and the dimmed light brought out the blue in the blue-green growth of late summer. The breeze over the backyard swimming pool was chilly but the pavement was warm underfoot. The four-year-old had refused to wear his rashguard and eventually stood shivering as he struck a heroic pose with a borrowed water pistol. The nine-year-old had brought his wetsuit but his lips were turning blue anyway. Raindrops pecked at the windshield on the way back out through the winding roadways. A crowd poured out the gates of a waterside park and across the street, fleeing for their own cars. Rain slashed down on the highway, even as light blue lay ahead. In the city, under now-featureless skies, a shower was just starting, or starting again.