Sunday Morning Coffee: Hot Enough?

Do people still ask, “Hot’nough for ya?” As if there is anyone who actually LIKES being toasted?

Well, I guess there are some who do. I am not among them. I know this present heat wave will break, and it can’t be soon enough!

Memory, however, takes me back to a time when we went outdoors to run, skate, swing, splash in whatever water was available, never giving a thought to how hot it was.

There was a place along the side of our apartment building that was shaded from the sun, and had a nice wide swath of grass-free dirt. We loved to dig roads, garages, and whatever else we could think of in that black dirt, which then, of course, was transferred onto our sweaty little bodies and our clothes. Lots of times, in cooler weather, we would simply take a “sponge bath” before bed, never filling up the tub. But on those hot summer days, we took a tub bath, and it felt like heaven! We went to bed fresh and clean, smelling of soap, and slept soundly so we could get up and do it all over again the next day 🙂

One of the highlights of the hot weather was the occasional nickel Mom would give us so we could go to the little store a couple of doors down. We would head straight for the freezer and get popsicles, which began to melt and drip as soon as we got the paper off once we were outside. What a treat! I loved the orange ones best, even when they dripped down my arms before I could finish them.

Back then, summers seemed to last forever. Most of us were actually ready to go back to school after Labor Day, not dreading it at all. In fact, on rainy days when we had to stay inside, playing school was one of our go-to games. I don’t remember ever feeling bored, even before we got our first television when I was eight. You don’t miss what you’ve never had! Back then, kids were outdoors until the street lights went on and parents began to call us in. Toward evening, we played hide-and-go-seek, along with other games that were more fun when you had lots of kids to play with.

The only danger that worried us was mosquitos, and they were vicious–another reason to escape indoors! I clearly remember having more bites on my legs than I had skin on my legs! Scratched bloody, mosquito bites were just a part of summer.

We got up ball games on the school playground. There were no coaches, no parents. Just a bunch of kids who sometimes fussed with each other about who was safe and who was OUT!, but we didn’t need adults to solve those problems. We slugged balls as hard as we could, ran, threw, hollered and yelled, and it was glorious!

Back then, no one worried about how dangerous old-fashioned playground equipment was. Monkey bars, merry-go-rounds, and teeter-totters were a normal part of our play. I don’t remember anyone getting seriously hurt. Nor do I remember parents standing around nor sitting nearby to supervise. We took our lumps and got right back up to do it again.

We were free, young, strong, and full of energy.

What a wonderful way to grow up!

4 thoughts on “Sunday Morning Coffee: Hot Enough?

  1. Linda Lee Adams/Lady Quixote

    Those were the days, my friend, we thought they’d never end… Helen Reddy is singing in my memory right now.

    I spent most of my childhood outdoors, which is undoubtedly the reason why my face and arms are covered in freckles. Sunshine, blue skies, puffy white clouds, green grass under my bare feet, and birds and squirrels chattering in the tall, shady elm trees. A swingset, a water sprinkler, and a canvas tent as my playhouse — yes, those were the days!

    We lived on Route 66 in the Missouri Ozarks, from the time I was six until shortly after I turned twelve. Except when the neighbors’ grandkids visited, there were no other children around, besides my much younger sisters and brothers. But I enjoyed being the big sissy/mommy substitute. We played tag, hide and seek, and all kinds of impromptu games.

    Our television was gone, hauled off to the dump by my ultra religious dad when I was in the first grade, because of the ‘sinful dancing girls’ on commercials and variety shows. At least I had books to read, after finding a box full of my parents’ hardback childhood treasures hidden in the garage. Tarzan, The Bobsey Twins, and many others. I was in heaven with a book in my hands! I read on the school bus, read with a book propped up behind the sink as I washed the dishes, read while lying in the grass outside, and I read with a flashlight under the blankets at night.

    Yes indeed, those were the days. Thank you for this lovely post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Linda, thanks for your lovely comment :). This was also back in the day when Dad was still the head of the household, and one who took that job seriously and with compassion was a good man, indeed. We didn’t always understand his boundaries, but we always knew he was doing what he saw as right for us.

      Liked by 1 person

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