Summer has been a beloved time of year since I was young when school ended and camp began. It was the beginning of warm weather, long hours outside, outdoor activities and time spent socializing with summer friends. I went to Camp Calumet in Wingdale, New York and later in Ware, Massachusetts. The camp was run by Bob and Josie Steck, with Sophie, our talented cook. Those were formative years and many of the relationships, although not ongoing, stick with me. Jo Jo Banter who had my exact birthday, Debbie Asten, our mom’s were best friends, the year I was 12 and had two polar opposite boyfriends, Marc (athletic and handsome) and Stanley (artistic and intriguing) and was forced to choose between them.
When I was a young Mom, summer had the same deep breath, relaxed quality. My kids went to camp too, and our days were unhurried. We spent time hanging out, playing sports, reading, having meals on the backyard redwood table. I am reminded of my parents, younger and vital then. I took their involvement for granted. Not intentionally, I just believed they would always remain the presence they were then. But of course, they didn’t, time and change being the ubiquitous elements they are.
I am most thankful for them, for my children (now young adults), for my friends – who I can share all those wonderful and youthful memories with, for the man I am now spending my July 4th weekend with, and for summer. Life goes on, love goes on, and somehow, so do we all.