Monday, March 11, 2013
Red Rover, Red Rover
Red Rover, Red Rover. Mother May I? Simon Says. Red Light, Green Light. Freeze Tag. Kick The Can. Or spinning round, arms wide, face turned towards the sky, until falling to the ground, dizzy, laughing, and feeling the world spin beneath us. One sunny, spring-like day and my thoughts go back to childhood games. Do children still play these days, in the gloaming of a summer evening? Mothers yelling for their kids to get home, kids pretending not to hear. Playing until the last light of day graces the horizon before shouting breathless goodbyes and hurrying home to parents pretending ire at the late arrival. I remember skin itchy from sweat, insect bites, and rolling in the grass. Scabby knees from bike crashes while attempting ridiculous stunts, sans modern helmet or protective gear. Stubbed toes on feet free of shoes for the duration of summer vacation. The days seemed to stretch on for a small eternity, summer seemed fill half of the year. Sitting in the branches of the gnarled Stanley Prune trees in the front yard, eating prunes, spitting pits down onto unsuspecting siblings. Laying in the cool shade of an overgrown grape vine, picking clusters of black, sweet globes, sucking out the nectared fruit, spitting deflated skins to the ground. Hide and seek in the dark. Olly-olly-oxen-free, the garbled, nonsensical translation shouted by the one deemed "It" to call the players out of hiding. Life was sweet and simple. It was not burdened by electronic tethers, incessant video games, non-stop television. Am I waxing nostalgic for a time that is now history? A time when children were children? A time when I was a child? Thankfully, I am still a child, at least in spirit. I play, revel silliness, laugh at the ridiculous. Warm evenings make me want to start up a game of Freeze Tag, or Kick The Can. Olly-olly-oxen-free!