Submitted by Satinder P S Puri on Fri, 07/23/2021 - 14:26.


Yesterday -- Thursday, July 22, 2021 was a very pleasant day -- with a high of 73 deg. F. Even with the humidity at 60% -- it did not feel one bit humid.


As usual, I was out playing solo tennis.
I was in the northwestern court (my favorite court) – along West 133rd Street -- and there was no one else. Yesterday evening – about six out of the eight courts were occupied in the evening -- today I was the only one playing.
Sometimes I cannot understand why players stay away on perfect days.
I played for one-hour from 7:55 to 8:55 p.m.
I play with nine balls – one for each of the planets.
I hit the balls (which I carry in my pockets) – one at a time -- over the net. I try to send them in a trajectory around our planet – unfortunately the planet’s gravity brings the balls down every time.
After I have hit all the nine balls – I walk over to the other side – after stretching myself at the poles holding the nets for a few seconds – collect the balls -- put them in my pockets and start the hitting process.
One side I play with my right hand and the other side I play with my left hand.
Does that make sense?
Let me digress and explain:
A few years ago -- I fell while playing tennis with a friend -- and hurt my right wrist.
The doctors told me that I had fractured my wrist and as result – I had dislocated my bones and also damaged a nerve.
Two operations were recommended – one for the bones and one for the nerve --each with a cost of $20,000. I spoke with some friends of mine and they suggested foregoing the operations because being a senior citizen – anything can go wrong -- making matters worse.
So I did nothing.
I had my right arm in a temporary wrist support and I started playing with my left hand. Soon I got good playing with my left hand.
After a couple of months – the bone in the right hand healed – and I was able to start playing with my right hand.
Now I play with both hands.
The nerve never healed – so I have reduced sensation in my right hand. At my age (septuagenarian) – it is impossible to get all the body parts to function at their optimal level. After I took the fall, I now play solo with both hands. Playing with a friend forces you to run after the ball -- putting you at risk of falling down.
Back to my playing:
So I continued hitting the balls from one side to the other.
Suddenly – I saw a golden glow on the western side of the court.
It was our sun – 93 million miles away – peeking through an oak tree across the street as shown in the photograph.
It looked like a big tennis ball.
I was totally mesmerized.
The glow started at 8:09 p.m. and lasted a few minutes -- and then it was gone –as the sun dipped behind the house with the red brick façade with a tall oak tree in the front.
It was a show straight from the heavens!
On Thursday, the sun rose at 6:12 a.m. and set at 8:54 p.m. giving us day with a length of 14 hours and 42 minutes.
The longest day was on June 20 – the first day of summer – when the sun rose at 5:52 a.m. and set at 9:03 p.m. – giving us the longest day of the year: 15-hours and 11-minutes long.
The days are getting shorter.
So far the day has shortened by 29 minutes – and getting shorter every day.
Enjoy the summer while it lasts, officially, for another two months!



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