When you’re ten years old and school is out on summer vacation, it doesn’t matter how hot the day is–you’re going for the gusto. At least, that’s how it used to be.
If it’s really, really hot, you play in the water. In our neighborhood, on the edge of the woods, was a little seasonal pond with a clean shale bottom. We sat in the water, or waded in it, splashing around with our toys. If you were a little older, the high school football field next door usually had its sprinkler system going, and we played around in that.
A hundred degrees? What did we care! We could squirt each other with garden hoses, or sit in rubber wading pools. And when I was twelve, I made sure I got the afternoon newspaper first so I could look at all the baseball box scores and see how Willie Mays did in the night game. I remember sitting on the lawn with the paper open to the sports page and my little iguana, very far from being a big iguana yet, perched on my shoulder.
So we rode our bikes and pitched horseshoes until we got hot, and then soaked down in the pond, the sprinklers, a pool, or in the front yard with the hose.
You never see that anymore. And that’s a pity, because it was good. I’m sorry kids miss out, these days, on times like that.