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The Ice Cream Man Cometh
My childhood memories are tinged in shades of black and white. Although various relatives and friends used their Kodak and Polaroid cameras to capture in vivid color many of the moments from the late 1970s and early 1980s, when my father got behind the lens they were recorded in black and white or sepia tones.
Sunday Afternoon in Hyde Park
In 1975, my father took a Sunday stroll along the stone pathways of Hyde Park in London. A crisp fall day, Speaker’s Corner was in full swing. People shouted from soapboxes. Gathering crowds heckled back. Children ran through the open fields with pinwheels. The grass was so green that my father believed he had stepped into a picture from a traveling book. A young man in his early twenties fresh out of college and looking to make a name for himself as a singer/songwriter in London, the experience was so moving that he penned a song that changed the trajectory of his life. Forty some odd years later, I walk the same pathways to find the places my father sang about to understand how I am like him.
I just want mac n' cheese so here are some fun facts about my mom's iconic summer pasta salad i guess
Did somebody say three free boxes boxes of mac n' cheese just for entering a Vocal challenge?!?! Oh boy! Is this Christmas or summer? I can't tell. To paraphrase Marlon Brando in The Godfather, this is a damn good offer I can't refuse. Just like Vito Corleone in the first movie of the trilogy, I want to firmly shake BOTH HANDS of the genius who thought of this brilliant idea. You've literally made me come out of a Vocal blogging hiatus just for this challenge. Thank you. Honor on you, honor on your cow, honor on the mac n' cheese company sponsoring this shindig. You've made this mac n' cheese lovin' girl very happy.
You'll Grow A Watermelon in Your Belly!
Dear Dad, "If you swallow the seeds, you'll grow a watermelon in your belly!" sounds like an iconic Dad joke. Your child, aka me, remembers hearing the phrase well! Occasionally, it was even stretched to include apples seeds! Yikes! I was a gullible child, and oh-so-fun to pick on!
We Got Lost in Paris
Through the cobblestone streets we traipsed, enchanted by the ancient city, as bewildered as Alice in Wonderland. But there is no better place to get lost than Paris.
We all live haunted lives. I'm not necessarily talking about spirits lurking around corners (although for some of us, I'm sure that's the case). What I'm referring to is the acute sense of loss & mourning that lingers after we pass from one phase of our lives to another. It's that familiar ache as you look around your empty apartment for the last time. It's the heart break, the joy, as we lose & gain new friends or relationships.
A Cool Choice...
For most of us, summer is a time when we want to relax, settle into a very comfortable deck chair, have a drink, and let the sun and heat allow us to forget how quickly the moment can pass. There are picnics, festivals, barbecues, family gatherings and vacations to be had, and with all of that, we have food to eat. For me, my family’s food and meals were always full of different varieties of colors, flavors, spices and styles. The difficult thing is to try to choose one thing that defined our summer eating. Barbecues would provide a lot of choices straight from the grill; then there was watermelon (not a favourite food, but still quite popular), sorrel (a drink made from the dried plant of the same name, and still not a favourite), ginger beer (pass), homemade candies and cakes and a lot of salad (oh, so much salad). But none of these choices really brings my childhood summers home to me (the only summers that really count). I have to choose something that involves my own family and certain outings to the farm where I participated in gathering this particular choice.
“The cabin in the woods had been abandoned for years, but one night, a candle burned in the window,” Lonnie began but stopped short once the condescending jeers from around the campfire echoed back at her.
Our Last Summer Together
The days of summer in the year of 2003 felt different in ways I can’t explain. The innocence and the love were pure in the purest way possible. It was also the second last summer that I had spent with my father when he was alive. I could trade a hundred summers to live that one summertime all over again or maybe just over and over again. I can’t really be someone who could speak of a million childhood memories with their fathers. I only own a few and even that with no entirety but only glimpses. From those couple of memories, I have a really sweet memory with my father. A memory that I will always cherish.
We rode bikes down sloped lawns into flooded streets, hitting the water with the tenacity of kamikaze pilots. We waged wars with squirt guns in worlds that didn’t exist, with battle lines drawn in the sunburnt driveways of Merritt Island, Florida. My summers were bright, magical, and long, yawning wide through the eyes of a child.
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