“Adventure is a need.”

The weather is playing games with my head. When I first woke up, it was sunny. I turned over and went back to sleep. When I finally woke up, it was cloudy, and that’s how it has been all morning: sunny then cloudy. It is 71˚ which is pleasant. Rain is predicted for some time tonight. I just hope that means after the grand debut of movie night. I’d hate for the proverbial red carpet to get wet.

My lawn got mowed this morning. The machine was so loud it got Henry barking at the intrusion. We were both glad when the guy was finished. Now it is quiet. Henry and Maddie are both asleep. Henry is exhausted from protecting the house and me while Maddie, at 19, sleeps most of the day getting up only to eat and have fresh water.

The weather is the first thing I check each morning. I stand outside with my papers in hand and take in the day. I smell the fresh air, check the flowers in the garden and pull up a weed or two off the brick walk on my way back to the house. The weather matters now, and I don’t know why. When I was kid, I never really thought about the summer weather unless it was raining. Light rain was a minor inconvenience, but heavy rain ruined the whole day, and we were stuck inside the house.

All summer, I wore shorts with a blouse, usually a sleeveless blouse, and sneakers. My brother spent the entire summer wearing dungarees, striped jerseys and sneakers with socks. Only the little boys wore shorts. We played ball on the hottest afternoons, and the only thing we minded was being hitless. I don’t ever remember the heat being an issue at night. I suppose the explanation might be we were so exhausted we collapsed. Relief from the heat didn’t mean air-conditioning. It meant a popsicle; red and blue were my favorites, one for taste, the other for tongue color. Running through the sprinkler was great fun on any summer afternoon.

When I was older, I sometimes walked with my friends to the opposite end of town to the MDC pool. We paid our dime, swam all afternoon and walked the over two miles home thereby defeating the entire purpose of the pool adventure. Of course, being kids, the illogic of the situation escaped us. I just remember the fun of that walk home, talking all the way as we carried our wet bathing suits wrapped in wet towels, occasionally swatting one another as we walked.

Life was amazing every day back then. The nights we slept outside in our backyards we’d  pretend we were on a big adventure. We’d talk while lying on our backs looking at the millions of stars lighting the night. We’d talk until the exhaustion of summer fun  closed our eyes. 

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8 Comments on ““Adventure is a need.””

  1. Bob Says:

    Living in Texas in the 1950’s the Summer’s were long and very hot. In those days air conditioning was just becoming widespread and we were suffering through a severe draught. The US Corp of Emgineers hadn’t built the many lakes around the DFW area and Dallas city water came from the Trinity River. They added so many chemicals that we drank bottled water and boiled the tap water for cooking. Eventually the city of Dallas drilled water wells around the area and folks lined up to fill their water bottles. During those hot dry summers boys wore shorts, tee-shirts and tennis shoes. The girls wore the same kind of outfit as you wore.

    We played outside in the morning before the heat got cranked up and then we went to the neighborhood public swimming pool in the afternoon. It was much too hot to walk the few blocks to the pool so my mother drove. She didn’t trust the lifeguards so she always accompanied us to the pool. Because the schools were not air conditioned the summer vacation began on Memorial Day and ended on Labor Day. The last couple of weeks of school were miserable with the classroom windows open and a large fan blowing hot air from the back of the room over our heads.

    Today the forecasted high temperature is 110 F degrees that’s only 43.3 C. You know it’s hot when the early morning low temperature is 85 degrees. 🙂 Rain of any kind isn’t in even mentioned in the ten day forecast.

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      I would never have guessed there was bottled water in the 50’s. I know there was great controversy about adding fluoride to the water even back then, but I didn’t know there were other chemicals. Shorts were never worn by boys. It was an early macho thing. My family went on a cruise down the Panama Canal, and even back then, my brother had to buy a pair of shorts. All he wore were jeans.

      The pool was really at the opposite end of town. We always walked. Back then my mother couldn’t drive, and even if she could, there wouldn’t have been enough money for a second car.

      In Ghana, during the hottest time the year, we were in school. My classroom had windows on both sides and a door which was always open. I’m sure it was hot as it often reached 100k, but I don’t remember being uncomfortable.

      I’m going to have a fire in the chiminea tonight.

      • Bob Says:

        Yes, there was Ozarka bottled water that came in gallon glass jugs. I remember the label said it was spring water. Fluoride was introduced to Crest toothpaste in the 1950s and the city of Dallas didn’t add it until the 1970s because it was considered a communist plot. Dallas was a very conservative bastion and was the home of the John Burch Society and the Freedom Radio network which were financed by Dallas resident H.L. Hunt who was the richest man in the world.

        I wore jeans to school but when the temperature went above 100 degrees my mother dressed me in shorts. When we moved to Dallas in 1953 my mother couldn’t drive. We had to live near a grocery store because my father traveled during the week. Once we moved into our house my mother learned to drive and my dad bought her a used car, a 1951 Kaiser.

        What is a chiminea?

      • katry Says:

        Bob,
        I had to chuckle that Dallas saw fluoride as a communist plot. I think it was added to our water in the late 50’s. Then I read the rest of your paragraph and realized why. I am proud to iive in the bluest state, the only one which voted for McGovern.

        Jeans were not allowed in my school and boys had to wear shirts with collars. My brother got sent home for wearing a sweater with no shirt underneath, which he wore on purpose.

        My father always took my mother food shopping on Friday.

        A chiminea is an outdoor fireplace. It has a chimney and a round bottom, sort of looking like light bulb. Mine is made of clay and sits on a wire holder so it isn’t directly on the deck.

  2. olof1 Says:

    The cool weekend didn’t start as cool as they said, it was quite hot actually and with a strong warm wind too 🙂 It is much cooler now in the evening so I am hoping tomorrow will be as cool as they said it would.

    Everyone wore shorts when I grew up, even my grandfather who usually dressed rather strict, a military man as he was. Even girls wore them and I guess the sixties and the hippie movement was a ground for that.

    Children really look at weather the right way, it doesn’t matter what kind it is 🙂 at least if one lives in a city where there are loads of things to do anyway.

    Have a great day!

    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      Today is cool and tonight will be chilly again. I’ll need a sweatshirt and I’ll have a fire going. I have piñon wood burning which smells wonderful.

      My father started wearing shorts around the house after he retired. I remember his blue ones most of all.My brother never wore them, and I think one of his sons doesn’t either.

      I complain about too hot or too cold.

      Have a great day!

  3. Hedley Says:

    Here in Tiger Town, the rains came early and have stayed. I have alternated between The Open, The Tour de France and Les Parisiennes (Anne Sebba) – Bowie blasts out and I am inert.

    Tomorrow we watch our home town heroes against the dastardly Red Sox. We have super duper seats for the showdown between baseballs finest and well, the Tigers. I didn’t used to be like this but Mike Illytch died and his family no longer had an appetite for a bloated payroll.

    So I continue to check the hourly weather and dream of hot dogs and beer and the foul ball that I have never caught.

    • katry Says:

      My Dear Hedley,
      Last night I watched your hometown heroes lose 1-0, a run which was scored in the first inning. Both teams had chances to score but didn’t. I was relieved at one point when the hometown heroes had the bases loaded with no outs and still didn’t score.

      I hope your games have some of the same exciting plays last night’s game had.

      Nothing better than a night at the park and eating hot dog and peanuts!!


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