The arrival of June has brought along with it many of the sights and sounds that are tied up most intimately with the season of summer. Fireflies fill the heavy air at twilight, and the (infernal) sound of crickets provide an extra blanket of white noise just outside of the bedroom window. With the solstice approaching quickly, the days stretch out almost to the breaking point, and, as much as I enjoy having the remains of the day last until almost 9 p.m., I’m equally frustrated by the first beams of the new rising sun trying to convince me that it is time to get up at 6 a.m. each morning.
The concurrent release of schoolchildren from their weekday bondage has made the city streets and neighborhood yards appear more vibrant than ever, with minors looking for a way to fill the long daylight hours in the absence of regular instruction. Just yesterday, as I was writing up some stories at home after work, I saw a couple of quick movements out of the corner of my eye, and I turned to see two young boys on bicycles riding toward the pond that lies behind a few of the houses on Bell Circle. The young men were carrying fishing poles along with them, and one spent a little time casting out into the pond to try out his luck for the day.
I didn’t see if they were able to catch anything for their efforts, but the sight called to might many of the summers of my younger days, when I would often find the time and inclination to scrounge up whatever sort of bait I could find and make my way to the pond in my Grandpa’s pasture. These days, it seems that one or the other of those conditions – time or inclination – goes missing when the subject of fishing comes up, and I find myself resorting to some other way to fill the time. As much as I hate to admit it, I’ve also only been swimming – one of my favorite summer activities – once since the pool was opened in late April. And if there is one thing that each passing summer teaches us, it’s that no summer seems to last as long as the one that immediately preceded it. So, while the temperatures are still getting ready to hit their peak in the coming weeks, go ahead and grab the summer by the tail before it another one slips out of our fingers.