Wednesday, July 4, 2012

15-Day Challenge: Day 4 Childhood Memory

Linking up with Sar for Day 4 of the 15-Day Challenge.

[4] What's your favorite childhood memory?

I had an absolutely wonderful childhood, so it's hard to pick out my favorite memory. Instead, I'll describe my favorite childhood day. It's the middle of summer, and I'm 11 or 12 years old.

I attended a parochial school across town from my home, and consequently knew only a few of the kids on my side of town. During the summer, that changed just a little. Our city Parks department ran summer youth programs staffed by college students at a few locations across town. The young students organized sport, art and team activities for the neighborhood kids, and the playfields were a fun, safe place to hang out at during the summer.

Each summer morning, I would eat breakfast, try to avoid my chores and then head off for the day on my bicycle. The nearest playfield was about a mile from my home, and conveniently close to two of my other favorite places...the library and a Dairy Queen! Hopefully, I had enough of my allowance in my pocket to buy a Dilly Bar or a Mister Misty Kiss once in awhile, but the library was really my favorite place...all those books. But I digress.

The understanding with my Mom was that I had to be home in time for dinner. I could play all day and wander with my friends and spy on the boys, as long as I made it home by 4:30. My Dad got off the bus from the Shipyard about 4:45 every weeknight, and dinner was promptly at 5:00. I was supposed to be home early to help set the table, but more likely I tried to avoid that chore, too.

So this memory is no more specific than that. It's really a feeling. It's the feeling of being a carefree child without worry or concern, who could safely wander the surrounding neighborhoods for hours on end. It's the absolute comfort of knowing my Mom is waiting for me in my warm, loving home. It's the security of my Dad coming home from work at the same time every day. It's the assurance of knowing that my five siblings and I are loved beyond measure, and that we will never want for anything. It's the best feeling in the world, and is my favorite childhood memory.

On a side note, we lost our mother when I was 14 and then our father nine years later. Maybe that's why those preteen years seem so innocent and precious. But I'll say it again: I had an absolutely wonderful childhood!



  1. Yes, we were very lucky. Secure, safe, loved, free to explore. A really wonderful childhood, though I was lucky enough to have it last almost clear through my teens, a lot longer than you.

    I notice you didn't mention the long, chilly walk to the ice-cold outdoor public swimming pool for lessons. Not sure if I ever actually saw you in the water -- mostly shivering along the edge.

  2. Aw, mom! That made me cry! A wonderful childhood indeed.

    What's a Mister Misty Kiss and how can I get one?