A Blue State of Mind

"The biggest adventure you can ever take is to live the life of your dreams." Oprah

My Photo
Location: The Western U.S, United States

I spent 48 years caring about what people thought of me. I'm not spending the rest of my life caring about that anymore!

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Summertime Memories

"Summertime and the living is easy.
Fish are jumpin and the cotton's high.
Your daddy is rich and your mommy is good-looking.
So hush little baby, don't you cry."

I've loved this song, even after my mother told me that it was a black mammy singing to her white plantation owner's son. It just evokes summertime to me.

Here in Phoenix we've been hit w/high temperatures. It's making headlines, it's all over the Internet, blah blah blah. Hello? We live in a desert. What are we expecting summer temperatures to be, the same as San Diego or Portland, Oregon?


Summertime in Phoenix always brings out my greatest memories. Playing 1, 2, 3 Redlight and Red Rover underneath the street light with Little Richard and his sisters. This was before the Leyvas moved in and I fell madly in love with the middle boy, Ruben. This was also before we had street lights every four homes.

When I was growing up each block had one corner street light. About ten years ago the city decided to plant a light in the middle of the block as well as lights at each corner. Gone were the dark places to steal kisses or furtive hand holding. Gone were the superior hiding places. The street lights brought all us kids together. Now almost each family has its own light and they seldom want to share.

Summertime was also filled with church meetings. In my church organization churches are divided into "districts" and each "district" would have annual fellowship meetings. My father, being the social preaching butterfly that he was, and because we never did too much other than go to church, attended every "district meeting" and dragged us along.

Most of the meetings occurred during the summer. The churches had no air conditioning back then but everyone was still required to dress to the nines and be joyful. While the Saints were shouting and danced in those crowded, hot churches, we kids would be outside sneaking to the corner liquor store buying pickles, pops and potato chips. My parents never minded us leaving church grounds as long as we were back in time to hear the 'message'.

Summer nights were romantic to me. I remember all the smells of summer. The unique aroma of heated concret. The smell of lawns and orchards being irrigated. Freshly cut grass or fragrant oleander bushes. and most of all, the smell of freshly wet dirt.

So, while everyone's complaining and griping about the heat, I welcome it. Heck, what else can I do? Move to Boise? Nah, have you seen the temperatures up there?


Blogger Jeni said...

Beautiful post about summers past and long remembered for the great times they held.
And, as to grumbling about the weather, since there's nothing any of us can do to change it about all one can do is grump and grumble a bit and then, make the best of it after that. Where I live - with the four seasons and winters especially that can be on the nasty, yucky side, I just tell myself when it gets really hot and humid here to remember this day come January when it is 20 below zero with snow swirling about.

July 08, 2007 7:02 AM  
Blogger Jeni said...

Hey - me again! Just wanted to tell you to stop by my place and pick up a nice little surprise present I have there waiting for you!

July 08, 2007 6:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

July 08, 2007 10:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Damn, I just love it when you write from your heart!

July 08, 2007 10:44 PM  
Blogger Maria & Stefano said...

I love your post!!!

Summer is such an amazing time...the heat is coming here today o.O


July 09, 2007 10:25 AM  
Blogger Debo Blue said...

Jeni-my first Blogger award! Thank you for considering little ole me. And of course, I'd like to thank the Academy and all the little people out there who worship and adore me!

Bob-how wonderful to hear from you. I thought you had all but abandoned us to read your weekly pages. Have you heard from Rupert and his gang yet?

Maria-you don't know heat until you've spent a summer in Phoenix. But it's a dry heat so it's better than that stuff you're going to get up there.

July 10, 2007 1:03 AM  
Blogger sarala said...

Lovely summer memories. I remember visiting my grandparents in LA in the summer. I was living in Seattle at the time and summer was an adventure of living in the pool, turning on the sprinklers and getting wet and pavement so hot you could literally fry an egg (or your bare feet) on it. We didn't have community like you did which is a loss to us all.
Enjoy your summer and avoid heat stroke.

July 10, 2007 6:26 AM  
Blogger Dave said...

I'd read this post before, and now I have again.

This time around, I heard the song as I read it. I know it's origins; but, isn't it beautiful?

I seldom retain the words in songs. The words in my head are another instrument.

I first saw and heard "Song of the South" as a kid and didn't understand its racist underpinnings. Now that I do, maybe wrongly, I still love its images and music. Take the "color" out of it and it describes an idyllic (sp?) existance.

July 11, 2007 5:30 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home