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Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Breathe it in. Summertime. Late nights at the ballpark. Burned hotdogs. Burned you. And, ice cold watermelon on a hot afternoon.

The summers I remember from my children were filled with adventure that we found ourselves. We went to church camp and vacation Bible school. We often made the summer trek from Lubbock to Fort Worth to spend time with cousins and Aunts and Uncles. When we got older, my brothers and sisters and I worked on the farm, helping my dad by "chopping cotton." It was hot, and it was hard work. But it meant we would have money for school clothes. We still had fun.

Summer has changed. It's changed, not just because we're in the middle of a record-breaking drought and on our 30+ day of triple digit temperatures. It's changed because we're grown-ups. No more summers off. Most adults in the country maintain a manic pace at work year round.

I took a vacation recently and enjoyed a bit of summer. I read two books. I got up earlier than anyone else and found a beautiful lake to fish. I enjoyed doing nothing. I caught fireflies with my grandkids. I went to the neighborhood pool and let a bucket of cold water drop on me over and over again. I learned new knock-knock jokes. I watched a lot of baseball. I ate ice cold watermelon.

For a short while, I loved summer. Now, I'm once again fighting traffic and trying not to feel like I'm suffocating in my work clothes as I make a mad dash from my car to the oasis of an air conditioned building.

My grandchildren are now back home. But I don't want to let go of the joy they find in a summer day. So, I'll have to fight the urge to scream when I see the temperatures climb higher and I worry about my electric bill.

I need to go to the community pool and stand in the middle of a fountain, take a wild ride down the slide again or just let the bucket dump the water.

I just need to act like I'm on vacation any time I get a chance. I need to embrace the little kid that still lives inside me.

I wonder what my neighbors would think if I used the slip and slide on the front lawn after work tomorrow?

Stay cool, ya'll.

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