Welcome to The Monthly’s annual summer essay issue. This spring, we invited readers to start with “31 Flavors” as the jumping-off point for a personal essay—“ice cream references not mandatory”—and see where the idea took them. As you might expect in the diverse East Bay, we received quite a smorgasbord of responses, encompassing a variety of sensual summer memories, as well as pregnant brides, doomed relationships, jumbo packs of crayons—and, yes, ice cream. Here are some of our favorites; hope you enjoy reading them as much as we did. —The editors.
A Wedding Sampler | by Judy Bebelaar
A Different Light | by Cynthia Overbeck Bix
Taste Summer | by Joyce Thompson
The Water’s Fine | by Rachel Trachten
Finer Than Frog Hair | by Wichita Sims
Coloring in the Details | by Joanne Catz Hartman
Flavor of the Moment | by Nancy McKay