Today my two Siamese kittens went outside to play on the patio, so I went out with them for a few moments just to see how they were getting along. They have just started going out alone and I just want to make sure they know how to get back in, ya know? After all, I have allowed myself to become the Keeper of the Cats, the Filler of the Food Bowl, the Human Pet of these two Kittens from the Dark Regions.
Anyway, while I was outside, I noticed something that seemed strange...something foreign for this season. Something you wouldn't expect in this lull in the school year. What I noticed was silence. Most of all, the silence of children playing outside. No hollering, no ball games in the streets or yards, no endless games of chase or hide-and-go-seek, no small little groups of kids just walking down the sidewalk heading off to where ever it is that kids go when strolling down the sidewalk in their own neighborhood. There were no sounds of young boys and girls sitting out in the yards under the shade trees, talking loud like young people often do when they are engaging members of the opposite sex in awkward conversation.
Remembering back to when my sisters and I were kids, summertime meant playing outside with the other kids in the neighborhood, playing chase, playing ball, riding bikes, climbing trees, throwing china berries at one another, walking to the park, sitting in the shade talking and solving the problems of the world as we knew it, chasing fireflies in the evening, and sitting on the porch after dark talking some more.
There weren't even kids running out to meet the ice cream truck. Come to think of it, I don't even remember seeing or hearing an ice cream truck. Not enough business, I guess. I sort of miss the old time ice cream trucks coming through the neighborhood , playing the same old music over and over again. When I remember it now, it was a kind of soothing , solid sound like a signal that all was right with the world.
It's a shame, really, but I guess that those days are gone. No more simple summertime pleasures like watching for shooting stars at night, no more sleeping with the window open so the attic fan would pull in a breeze, no more looking forward to visiting the cousins in the country, or swimming in the river, or going to the drug store for a banana split. Seems like all the simple pleasures are gone and the children of today will never have fond memories like those. That to me is sad, really sad!
But...like so many other things in this world today, I can't do anything about it. So I will just take a fresh cup of coffee, go out to the patio, enjoy watching the kitties play tag and listen to the sad, sad sound of summer silence. Want to join me?