Growing up on a grain farm (no animals except pets), Spring, Summer and Fall were always busy times. The year always began in April when dad and I would build this huge bonfire to sterilize an area that would later become the seed bed for the vegetables. Later Spring was consumed with preparing the fields for planting. Late Spring early Summer was all about cultivating, keeping the weeds down. Usually along about July 4th, the crops would be tall enough to pretty much take care of themselves and we'd have a few weeks when there wasn't that much to do. It was hot, sultry, languid, true *Summertime*.
My favorite things (in no particular order, and it varied with different ages of my childhood): Running naked in the rain; Going skinny dipping with friends in my dad's pond; Watching thunderstorms; Setting off fire works; Eating watermelon; Meeting my friends late at night (didn't get dark till late) and doing some *very* interesting things with them
; Performing naked private rituals in the fields under a full moon when the air temperature was around 80°; Playing games like 'hide n seek' or 'kick the can' or one a group of us made up that we called 'enemy car'; A group of us boys being taken on camping trips by my dad down near the Ohio river where we'd run trotlines at night, catching fish we put in a barrel to stock the pond; Driving around at night with my friends half naked with the windows rolled down listening to rock and roll, going to the drive in for double-decker 'Scotsburgers', fries and a coke; Watching horror films at the drive-in theatre. Summer was always awesome.
And I miss it!
It almost *never* feels like summer here in the Bay Area by comparison. Seldom gets above 80° and even then it cools off fast as soon as the sun goes down. No thunder storms *ever*. As a kid and teenager I got as close to naked as I could (and sometimes completely so) and stayed that way as much as possible. I was always as brown as a berry. Here's me and my dog, age 7ish? I don't know…
And another pic with some neighbor kids (I'm in the middle). The older boy and I had a 'thing' going on
He wasn't and we weren't the only ones, either, farm boys being farm boys and all.
And, yeah, we really were that dirty pretty much all the time. Always rolling in the dirt. But, hey, we always washed our hands before supper and took a bath once a week whether we needed one or not!