Everyone Is Entitled To My Opinion – On Summertime

by Paul Big Bear
Dear Friends,
      How old are you? Perhaps you are my age, if so, in the good old summertime while school was out for the summer, it meant having fun in the sun if you were under 16, the age most boys took steps into manhood; as you learned to drive, got a job to earn money for a car and a girlfriend. All things that took them away from things like; fishing, swimming, bike riding, camping out, and playing ball to name a few childhood past times. Instead it was a summer job; perhaps pumping gas, working as a soda jerk, maybe cutting lawns, yes you were growing up. It was time to leave behind the fun of childhood endeavors such as trading bubblegum cards, reading comic books, running through the sprinkler on a hot day?
How about playing baseball in a vacant lot, drawing the bases in the dirt with a stick and choosing up sides, where did you fish and swim? Was it a neighborhood pool, a crick, a creek, a pond, river, or a lake? What was your catch of the day; bass, sunfish, perch, catfish, perhaps a bullhead and did you take it home, clean it, and have it for dinner? Maybe you had a swing that swung you out over the water allowing you to jump like Tarzan into the water or a bridge or a cliff where the bravest jumped as high as ten feet into the water below. How many hours of fun did you have floating in an old truck inner tube or did you really get adventurous and build a raft for exploring?
Oh the great fun and friendships of our childhood summers, how much better did an ice cream cone or pop in a glass bottle taste? Did you pick fruit right from the tree or bush and eat it rubbing the apples and pears off on your clothes first. I remember making slingshots, whittling the wood and cutting strips from an old bicycle inner tube. Yes summertime was a time for playing with friends (any blood brothers out there?) growing stronger, taller, and forming character. Yes the good old days, sadly gone forever. Have you ever tried to reminisce the good old days with your children, grandchildren? Sharing the simple joys of fishing with a hook, line, and pole cut from a tree. Have you shared with them your prized possession, your old jack knife? Have you tried teaching them how to whittle? Want to have real fun? Tell them about an ice cream cone for a nickel or a bottle of pop from a machine for a nickel. Oh the joy of explaining a pinball machine and five balls for a nickel. Yes those were the days, but enough memories I am taking my grandson for ice cream and a candy bar, maybe while we’re driving to the store I can get him to stop playing games on his phone long enough for me to thrill him with tales of penny candy.