It's hot right now. Triple digits for more days in a row than in many previous years. But it's really nice out. Dry, sunny and still. That's how I like it. I'm thinking the drought might have inhibited the cicadas this year, which is fine by me, because as I set off for the mailbox I noticed it was really quiet.
Then I noticed it was really quiet.
Then I got a little freaked out.
What in the world do kids do in the summer now?
When I was little, I hung out every single day, rain or shine, with my friend David from two doors down. We watched Jason and the Argonauts 80 squillion times, we played kickball, we stole our neighbor's vegetables (I think the statute of limitations has expired), we dug a large hole in the yard for an underground cave that we discovered led to grounding, we caught crawdads, we watched tadpoles and fish in the pond down the street, we played hide and seek, we found puppies and kittens we brought home to dismayed parental units.We were outside ALL the time.
There were GINORMOUS football games with all the kids in the hood - twenty or more kids, ranging from 5 years old to 15. I remember establishing the endzones in David's yard EVERY time even though they never changed. Our hide and seek games were just as big, with sort of nebulous endings, as people got called in for the night towards the end of them when it got dark. The mom yell at sundown was heard all up and down our street.
We walked to the 7-Eleven for Slurpees when we could get away with it, even though we were forbidden to cross the street. (Sorry Mom - I know you're reading - but as usual, I was right :) we lived. Plus, it was very hot.).
But now - I see no kids outside anymore. We have tons of kids in our neighborhood but what in the world are they doing in the summers? Why aren't they out catching lightning bugs and stealing my vegetables and playing hide and seek? I've not heard a mom yell yet at sundown. Did we forget to transfer hide and seek and kickball to the next generation?
I sure hope not.
Here's a picture of some of our gang on Easter.
Notice that I am dressed for church and yet felt the need for a box of animal crackers. Notice that David, who was Catholic and apparently went to a later service than Lutherans, has no shoes, but he does have a pearl-handled gun. Notice I'm all HOLD MY HAND and he's all I HAVE SOMETHING IN MY EYE.
I don't remember everyone, but I do remember that these friends filled my days with play, and imagined worlds, and games and competitions and joy. I remember being outside - all summer long.
Accessories: Corner Rounder, White Gel Pen, Miscellaneous gel pens from Costco, Scalloped Oval Punch, Oval Punch
Go outside tomorrow. Take your kids with you. There's cool stuff out there.