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Four Years at the Mount

Summer Dreams

Those summer nights...

Sarah Muir
MSM Class of 2018

(6/2016) I have never liked summer. It has always been too hot, too humid, and the chances of me getting a sunburn are astronomical. Recently I have been warming up to the idea of summer, however, writing this article in the middle of the recent bouts of rainy days, I could do with a few hours of sunshine. I miss those summers long ago, maybe because I am far removed from the heat and mosquitos, but looking back at the summers of my youth, I am struck by an overwhelming sense of nostalgia.

When we would travel for a summer vacation, my family would travel to the far away and exotic Ocean City. We would spend a week at a small flat that our relatives owned. It was not a grand place or luxurious, but for the week it would be ours: Our place at the beach. For a week, I was surrounded by the smell of chlorine, sunblock, and the ocean. My sister, my father and I would go to the nearby pool in the afternoon. We would have to walk fast because the asphalt would have been baking in the sun all day and we would usually go barefoot.

My family is not made up of beach dwellers. We would go to the beach, of course, but usually it was at the end of day when all sunbathers and beach runners had gone away, along with the fading sun. My father would bring his fishing rod and see what he could catch; my mother and sister would sit in some chairs and bury their feet in the sand while I would walk, wander, and look for sea shells. The one down side of these memories is that they are tinged with the memory of the sunburns I used to get, no matter how much sunscreen I lathered on. Months later in the dead of winter, we would slip on some shoes and be surprised to find that some left over sand of long gone summer had hidden away in the crevices.

While we have not gone to the beach in quite some time, there are things I do over the summer that will stay with me always. I will always remember going to my grandparentsí house, over the river and though the woods, and chasing fireflies in the fading twilight. The smell of freshly mowed grass and the sound of cicadas. I remember laying down on the sun-warmed asphalt of their driveway and looking up at the lightly swaying eves of the trees. I will remember sitting outside with my grandpa and watching the hummingbirds fight over control of the feeder, as my grandmother hangs sheets on the clothes line. Most likely, I will go and spend a few nights there this summer, it is the one tradition that I can never and will never stop.

This summer, things are expected to change in a big, big way. As I have previously mentioned with my other articles, my sister is getting married. Actually, by the time you read this article the wedding will be over. The confetti will be swept up, the cake eaten, and she will be starting her new life. I am so happy for her, but at the same time a little sad that everything will change. I remember, in years past, Katie and I would sit at the dining room table with my parents and play cards or dominos.

This summer, unfortunately, will be filled with work, but I am trying to squeeze in a few moments of summer into my never before, busy schedule. Hopefully, I will be able to write a bit more, but so far I have been unlucky in those endeavors. In the midst of the sweltering heat and oppressing humidity of summer, I always forget the fond memories of those summer nights long ago.

Read other articles by Sarah Muir