Sorting through last month’s photos one more time before I file them away for our annual yearbooks and I feel like there’s still one more post before we reluctantly move on from our long adventurous travels. The 22-hour drive home and the miles and miles of rolling hills lend lots of time to reflect and think. Being in South Dakota turns back time for me. We pull into town and I’m twelve again in cutoff shorts and a tank top, biking to the pool for the second session with fifty cents in my pocket for a soda. It’s a small town and time stands still somewhat. Some things change, but not the big things really.
My mom and I went for a walk one night. About 15 minutes in I had to stop to share the silent memory lane I’d been walking on while we carried on a random conversation.
That shed over there was where my friends and I snuck cigarettes one day on Homecoming.
That street sign reminds me of the night my friends and I threw soda bottles at it on a walk one night.
This crack in the sidewalk is so deep, we were always afraid to go over it with our skinny 10-speed tires.
That house over there had the best apple trees and we’d pick them every fall and give the sweet elderly lady money for her amazing apples.
That’s what it’s like there. Every street holds a memory…even some of the cracks in the sidewalks.
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I took my kids to the city park where I spent my birthday parties, the city swimming pool where I spent summers as a girl swimming all day and into the night and where I worked in my cool teen years as a lifeguard twirling my whistle like the best of them, to the public library where I spent hours choosing just the right books and where I learned to love to read, and to the carousel I’d ridden a thousand times.
My kids listen to all my stories about small town life. They play with my old toys and stomp in my old stompin’ grounds…all the while making their own childhood memories. Like new memories in old cocoons.
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Diving board firsts at my old pool.
The Pickler House in my hometown. Home of South Dakota’s first Congressman.
Above-ground pool glory.
Turning the page on June and laying out the celebratory paper ware for the festivities at hand. I hope you have your flags waving, ready to make your own memories this weekend.
Any meat on the grill…check check.
Happy Fourth, y’all.