Saturday, October 17, 2009

Week 7 (10-16-2009) 2 Intros to essay: Long Essay: Essay #3


It is 8:00AM, the first Monday after the 4th of July, and the bicycle rack at the Auburndale Playground is already filled beyond capacity. It is opening day of Summer Day Camp and approximately 200 children, ages 5-17, are running, jumping, and laughing all at the same time, along the banks of the Charles River.

Board and card games, including checkers, Pollyanna, Monopoly, Bingo, Old Maid, and Solitaire are all sprawled out on pine picnic tables under enormous elm and tall oak shade trees. Teams are being formed for softball, baseball, basketball, croquet, and tennis. There is even a bike trail club. Auditions are being held for roles in a play, which will be a finale to the summer’s events on the last Saturday in August before an audience of dotting grandparents and neighbors. Boxes of yarn, felt, glue sticks, colored construction paper, gimp sewing projects, poster paint, and small, unfinished wooden bird houses, and other miscellaneous craft supplies are neatly arranged on blankets scattered on the lawn covering nearly three acres.

Swings, slides, jungle gyms, sandboxes, monkey bars and parallel bars dot the grassy fields. Carolyn and Mary each arrive by bicycle early that first Monday morning. They have been best friends since Kindergarten. Although they now attend different schools during the year, they are inseparable on the weekends, any given school holiday, and especially during summer vacations. They may be in the same place at the same time, but what they choose to do once they are there, their perspective on how they choose to do it, and their unique personalities would seem to make it unlikely that they could share much at all in common.


Every year, on the last day of school, I circle five dates on my calendar. June 30, for my birthday, the 4th of July holiday, the first Monday after the 4th of July, when the town playgrounds are staffed with camp counselors, the last full week in August for our family vacation, and the first day back to school, typically a Monday after Labor Day. On that first Monday after the 4th of July, the Auburndale Playground officially opens their Summer Day Camp for the season and I am looking forward to another fun summer.

I look forward to learning new board and card games myself and teaching the younger children now old enough to learn how to play by the rules. I arrive promptly every day at 9:00AM and stay until 3:00PM when the City Park Attendant arrives and the Camp Counselors leave.

Every year, my best friend and I meet one another on that first Monday at 9:00AM by the bicycle stand. Shortly afterwards though, we part company to stand in different lines to register for the various activities we want to participate in. The camp counselors clearly see the differences between our choices. They are amused as we wave to one another from our respective places in line. Often, we are asked if we wouldn’t like to have one another in the same activity. It is clearly evident that my personality, preferences and style are very different from those of my best friend Mary.

1 comment:

  1. I think the windup in these, especially the first one, is too long for the eventual pitch. That is to say, we're given camp, summer, dates, etc, all of which tend to misdirect our attention. I certainly don't object to intros that slowly circle the topic, but they should be funnelling and focusing our attention, not, as I say, misdirecting it.