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Summer Memories

Summer is beginning to draw to a close.  It's been fun, but it has definitely flown by quickly this year.  With the new house, work schedule, chasing the little one around, and other things going on this summer... I feel like I've barely blinked, and the summer rapidly passed by.  

While Autumn is my favorite season, it's always a little sad when I think about the passing of another summer.  All of the promise and potential of the summer season has faded, and half of what I set out to do never got completed.  

I once heard that you only get 18 summers to spend with your children, and this was already our third summer together.  I'd like to think the three of us here made the most of our summer together in our new home.  But like many people, I suppose, I always think about what more I could or should have done with the little one to make things more memorable.  Especially when my line of work takes me away from home for days at a time, the regrets caused by time begin to pile up.

My Grandfather always said the older you get, the faster time goes.  He even joked that he was so old he shouldn't bother getting out of bed in the morning, but I've actually read that he was correct.  While time itself never changes, our perceptions indeed do.  

When you're young, the days at school seem like they take forever.  It's all relative because, at a young age, we have very little to compare those hours to.  At an older age, 8 hours seems short compared to the past 50 years, but those same 8 hours compared to the past 8 years of a child's life seem much longer.  

It's all perception.  Of course, in 2022, we also have more things that occupy our time.  How many times have you pulled out your phone to "kill time," and next thing you know, an hour has gone by?

Summers went fast when I was a kid, too.  I'd have my whole summer mapped out when school let out in June.  Before I knew it, it was the middle of August, and our family was heading for two weeks of lakeside relaxation in Maine as we did every year.  We'd come home from our vacation, and we'd sometimes only have a week before Labor Day, and school would start again.  

The stack of mail one of our neighbors collected for us was one of the few things that took the sting off of coming home.  I'd rush into the house and sort the mail for myself, my brother, Mom, and Dad.  I'd search for my school schedule to find out who my teacher would be.  I'd then immediately call my friends to tell them I was home and see if we had any classes together.  Once the minivan was unpacked, I'd start begging to get Mom to take me to the drug store to pick up my new school supplies.  These days, Target puts up the "Back to School" supplies in June, but back then, they'd pop up toward the end of August, and the selection would be pretty limited.  

It was always a tough decision when selecting my lunch box.  Will this be the year that having a Batman lunchbox is no longer cool?  Could I get away with the Ninja Turtles folders and notebooks that I really wanted, or did I have to go with the dull solid colors to avoid the mockery of other kids?  

I've been quite busy these last weeks, so forgive this abbreviated post.  At work, I have periods where I'm forced to sit and do nothing, and that's when I get my best thinking in.  My mind has been wandering to summers of years gone by lately.

My last "carefree" summer was 1998.  I hung out with my friends, and we mostly watched and discussed pro wrestling.  In 1999, I got my first real job working for a landscaping company.  By company, I mean that it was just a guy with a pickup truck my Mom knew somehow, but I worked the backpack leaf blower and weed trimmer.  There was a nasty heat wave in 1999, just like there was this year, and I remember going out to work long days in 100-degree weather until most of the lawns were so dead there was nothing to cut.  I lived for rainy days that summer when he'd call early in the morning and say we were rained out.  Honestly, I'd rather he had called out on the 100-degree day and gone to work in the rain.

Every summer after that, I got a seasonal job to make some pocket money and fill my time.  I worked jobs that ranged from stocking shelves in a craft store to playing with dogs in a boarding kennel.  In the summer of 2005, I got my first paid flying job, and I've only flown planes for a living ever since.

I've spent some time thinking about those summer jobs and the summer activities from my youth.  I've written about most of those before, and rather than write a full-length article this week while I'm short on time, I'd like to post a collection of links to various pieces about summer memories in case you missed one or would want to reread them.  

Thanks for your continued support here at YesterYear!  Happy Summer!

Please Click "Keep Reading" for the list of links!