I’ll try being nicer if you try being smarter!

It’s June 22nd. Almost July. Summer is in full swing, there’s no denying it.

However, with all the flowers, the short shorts, the sweat, the trees in bloom and the smog warnings, I’m just not feeling it. I’ve had this problem for the last few years. It seems that summer to me is embedded in childhood memories and activities that for obvious reasons, I can never go back to and repeat.

What I wouldn’t give to be in elementary school again, spending 8 hours of each day in my cousin’s backyard pool. I wouldn’t leave. They could only lure me out with dinner and pop, and even after that, I was back in. My hair was green and felt like straw and I cared not. Nothing was ever more fun than those times, where I dove after neon coloured sticks that I’d thrown to the bottom of the deep end.
This should be an easy memory to re-live, something I could do again to bring back my ideal definition of a good summer day. But it isn’t. I’m not about to get into a bathing suit in public, I’m not about to share my pool with screaming kids and their sunscreen-applying mothers, I’d be devastated if my hair turned green and straw-ish again and it just seems like such a hassle to get changed out of a wet bathing suit nowadays. Yuck.

I loved camping as a kid. Though a lot of it was usually rained out, we’d always go with my aunt and uncle and their kids, and occassionally the other aunt, uncle and cousins were there too. We always got the same spot at Buffalo Pound Lake, right across from the outhouses (Prime location, no?) and across from this big hill. We’d always climb the hill and it felt like freaking Mount Everest, but now looking back on it, it was really quite tame. One time we found gravestones up there and I thought that they had been murdered, since they were so secluded and the murderer must not have wanted anyone to find them. It didn’t really cross my mind that murderers wouldn’t nicely bury and commemorate someone’s life with a granite headstone. Pfft. Whatever.
I loved going out on the boat, fishing with my uncle and dad and cousins. Mind you, I wasn’t fishing. No, no, that wasn’t for me. I was out there reading, uninterrupted. Everyone else was under a strict enforcement of silence, so as not to scare the fish away, which was the perfect place for me to read of the latest Babysitter’s Club adventures.
I loved zooming around my bike, and though this ocassionally turned into a disaster (hey Courtney, you reading this?) it was always so much fun. Riding to the one lonely general store was the highlight of any camping day, since there would usually be ice cream involved. If it rained, that was cool too. We’d drink boatloads of pop and play hours of card games, no problem.
But now, the idea of camping repulses me. EW. No running water, no internet, no couch, mosquitoes, sunburns, setting up and taking down the tents, no take out meals? Um, no thank you. I am far too engrained in my city bitch lifestyle to go and tramp around in the woods, getting myself all dirty.

I would read like a woman possessed during the summers. I lived a block and a half from the library and was there ALL THE TIME, after one of my first babysitters decided it was simply unnatural for my brother and I not to have a library card. She promptly marched us over there and signed us up. And my love affair for the written word began. Nowadays, reading seems unproductive, even to a lazy bastard like me. There’s a kitchen to be cleaned, groceries to be bought, laundry that never ends, a dog to take out……..reading?? Far down on the list.

Even though I clearly stand no chance of ever living what I define as a ‘perfect summer’ again, I always get the same giddy anticipation when I feel summer hovering in the air, just around the corner. It still presents its promises the same way, though it just doesn’t deliver anymore. I’m more concerned with mapping my activities according to whether or not they have air conditioning, than I am with tracking down the perfect ice cream cone.

I miss summer. It’ll never be back. There’s a park near me with a wading pool and I’m always drawn to it, since we spent many days in the local one back home. Though the water was freezing cold and I’d inevitably fall pretty damned hard onto the concrete, it was oodles of fun. Sometimes I want to stop and watch the kids play when I walk past. Then I remember I’d probably get arrested.

Where did my lazy hazy crazy days go? Have you guys figured out how to get them back?

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Comments on: "The lazy hazy crazy days of summer…….are they still around?" (11)

  1. Being an adult is no fun. Which is why I’m going to win lotto and build a water park in my back yard.

    Nice plan! I think I may follow suit when I win the lottery. Because it’s going to happen next week you know.

  2. I hate summer.

    Very blunt. I approve.

  3. It does make me sad to think there is no going back to those times, but look at how fun it is to have those memories! Yours are great, and brings back some of my own. Summer now is certainly not the same, but years from now you will look back on this time in your life fondly too, so try not to let it slip by unnoticed. 🙂

    I have no doubts that I’ll look at this part fondly too, overall I’m quite happy with everything now. It just seems like there was such promise that you can’t get after a certain age….but I want it back!

  4. Hey! No being down on summer (or on grown ups not having fun!)

    To be fair, I suppose the wee ones keep this fun for me? I did all the city kid summer stuff when I was little (riding bikes on the lakeshore, going to every outdoor pool in the city, finding new libraries, hopping the ferry to the island and just staying on the ferry all day, all the outdoor festivals all summer), but it wasn’t till I got married that I started going swimming in real water, or roasting marshmallows or other stuff like that and now I love it all. 😀

    I still do all of those things, except riding the ferry all day. I’d love to, but one of my wee ones isn’t down with it, can you guess which one? 😉 Too interested in getting off the boat and just running and running in the grass, which is also not a bad way to spend the summer.

    I think that having wee ones would be helpful in this, since you could do the whole reliving vicariously through them thing.
    I’ve never gone to the islands. Isn’t that a shame? And i call myself an adopted Torontonian….

  5. I also get excited at the prospect of summer, but sadly it isn’t quite the same as when I was younger. I don’t know why but the older we get the less we have fun. If only I knew then what I know now …… ummmmmm

    Ain’t that the truth. So damned cliche, but sooooooo true.

  6. maleesha said:

    I loved this post, because I can SO relate. Summers stopped being awesome once I realized I would never have them off again. I don’t know exactly when the line between Summer Memories and Summer Realities occured, but once it’s been crossed I don’t know there is a going back. I’m a very nostalgic person and this whole concept really bothers me. However, I found these quotes about nostalgia and while they don’t exactly make me feel better, at least I know I am not alone…hell, if famous people made quotes about it then it must be a universal truth:

    We could never have loved the earth so well if we had had no childhood in it. ~George Eliot, The Mill on the Floss, 1860

    Nostalgia is like a grammar lesson: you find the present tense, but the past perfect! ~Owens Lee Pomeroy

    It becomes increasingly easy, as you get older, to drown in nostalgia. ~Ted Koppel

    Nostalgia is a file that removes the rough edges from the good old days. ~Doug Larson

    Nostalgia isn’t what it used to be. ~ Peter de Vries

    I love your quotes. Thank you maleesha. I am SO nostalgic. I definitely drown in it, on an almost daily basis. I get into these introspective moods and stuff like this post comes from them.
    I love going back to some things, but sometimes wish I could keep my mind in the present…….if for nothing else but to create more memories and nostalgia for the days ahead.
    Double edged sword, eh?

  7. The lazy hazy crazy days of summer filled with pretsels soda and beer..

    I too watch gilmore girls.

    I now have that song in my head.

    I adore the Gilmore Girls. I wish I lived in Starr’s Hollow. I’d stalk Luke.

  8. Have a baby! *pick your jaw off the ground please* – ha! ha! ha! That’s how I got to re-do my childhood. It was better the second time around 😉

    Whoot! How’s that for a comment? *seriously, pick your jaw off the ground girl!*

    My jaw fell off my face with such force that it probably shot through the earth and is currently somewhere in China.
    I am not really what you could call the ‘mothering’ type. I have a dog! That’s enough!

  9. Might I suggest getting really drunk and watching a few movies. It won’t bring back the good old days, but who cares? You’re really drunk and watching movies. 😛

    Most brilliant piece of advice ever! Hahahaha. Thanks man!

  10. my lazy crazy hazy days of summer were defined by riding around on my bike in our neighbourhood with my younger brother (and sometimes my older sister when she didn’t think she was too cool), heading down to the creek and grabbing little creek frogs…we’d put them in our plastic toy buckets, ride around for a few blocks, and then deposit the frogs on people’s driveways…it was probably a pretty mean thing to do, you know to take them out of their habitat like that, but it was super-fun to be like “haha, there’s a frog on a driveway”…so ya, there was that…..and no, I haven’t done this activity in my adult life..would it be weird to?

  11. joebecca said:

    Wow! your summers sounded as fun as mine! did you ever take the playing cards and put them in your spokes so your bike sounded like it had a motor when you rode it? we had an alley that was so fun to ride through, there were rocks to skid out on, and you could turn on a dime which made cops and robbers all that much more fun. I had a basket on my bike and some of the stuff i found to put in it! yikes! half rotten apples, leaves, dandelions, rocks.. you name it, it was in there! i miss reading too, and spent alot of time at the library. But alas, you’re right dear beauty, there is far too much to be done nowadays. Chores, cooking, laundry. My b/f’s dad just gave me a whole bag of books he thought i might like. i promptly came home and put them in the empty bottom shelf of my bookcase. They look nice anyway.

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