A Summer Memory

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Riding our bikes was pure freedom. Those hot summer days when swimming was done and other activities were sought out despite the intense heat, bike riding to the K&W Country Store took precedence more than once.

It took a few miles to bike there, up and over gigantic hills, past the school playground and over one hill in particular that was so big none of us could ever have rode it up all the way. Nevertheless the freedom and joy that trip brought never deterred any of us from making the trip. (Although on the trek up I’m sure we often wondered why we even attempted to conquer the hill in the first place. Did any of us ever make it to the top without hopping off our bikes and walking?)

The three of us also knew that once we did arrive at the country store there would be aisles of ice cold drinks to choose from and ice cream to boot! Once those hills were tackled and our leg muscles burning from exhaustion our prize would be waiting within those four walls.

I remember those isles well. The cold air from inside would hit you with such sweet relief. To be sure each one of us would take our time walking down those isles filled with delicious treats. A real smorgasbord of sugar if you ask me! Twizzlers, Ring Dings, ice cream sandwiches, Hostess treats galore, Sour Patch Kids and Jawbreakers lined the isles.

B. would take his time picking out just the right treat. G. and I usually knew what we wanted but still debated whether or not the ice cream cookie or pack of gummy worms was best that day. I’m sure we made deals with each other too.

“G. if you get the Twinkies, I’ll get the Twizzlers and then we can share half!” B. would say. (B’s bartering attempts only worked some of the time as G. soon realized that his idea of half and her idea of half weren’t up to par with each other. The IBC Root Beer, Sprite and Lemonade usually weren’t far behind in our purchases.

After what seemed like an hour in the store we’d step back out into the often times scorching heat, pack our snacks in our backpacks, hop back on our bikes and head for the gigantic hill. Only this time we’d get to ride down instead of up. With the wind blowing our hair, sun shining down upon us we’d remember why we always came back and tackled that enormous mountain of pavement: because in the end we’d conquer. Well, at least that’s what it felt like zipping back down the hill with the prizes in our possession and the feeling of flying pulsing throughout.

B. who rode in the front of the line would signal when to make to the turn into the school playground. G. and I would follow him towards the picnic bench and there we’d take the time to bask in the glory of our accomplishment. This was life. Good food, family and adventure. It was freedom at its best.

Of course our adventure wouldn’t end until we had our turns on the playground zip line, monkey bars and swings. What childhood memory would be complete without them? But after all that, as the sun began to set, the three of us would ride home over those hills once again feeling quite content in our ride to the K&W Country Store. Riding our bikes was pure freedom.

What are some of your favorite summer memories? Please share them below!

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