It's been awhile since I've written anything decent because I've been caught up in 100 words.
I apologize. (quote from deadwood)
anyway. In lieu of a sappy post to make girls fall in love with me, I'll give you something I wrote just a bit ago. Basically a childhood memory. Hope you enjoy it.
When I was younger the neighbor down the street had a gigantic pool in his backyard. Being a mindful pool owner, once a year he would empty the entire thing to clean it. This process entailed attaching a huge hose to the side of the pool and running it down to the street. Then he would turn the valve and let the water flow. The water would follow gravity from his pool to the street, into the gutters and then drain through grates placed every so often into the sewers. The nearest grate was on the corner of the street. When he hit that valve, the water flowed from his house all the way down to the end of the block. The vast amount of water created a miniature stream in the gutter for the entire time the pool was draining. Even on days that were cloudless and scorching the water flowed incredibly strong.
In my yard there used to be a tree with very interesting seeds. Looking like needles, about an inch long, but flat. There was a vein running down the middle of the seed, giving it two sides. Well, when you put these seeds in water, with an avid imagination you no longer had a seed. Instead you had a racing boat! The bow was the pointy end which connected to the tree. My brother and I would each scour the yard for the hardiest and fastest boats we could find. Running up to the spot where the water entered the street we would each drop our boats in on the count of three. Then chasing and cheering them along we would race to the end of the block!
Years of wear and tear and nature had eradicated any smooth, seamless surface from the gutters lining the street. The voyage from source to sewer was a treacherous one to say the least. Not only were there loose pebbles creating rapids, but twig dams (you had to portage over these), and wide slow lakes that spilled out into the street (either you invoked the power of god to reposition your ailing craft, or you decided erect some sails and blow like hell). Always was the fear of losing your prized boat in the turmoil that was the gutter. More than once I stopped following mine for a split second, only to lose it among the numerous other boats that were making the trip as well. Sometimes the owners of the other craft decided that the trip was uneventful when you relied on the elements alone. Ignoring cries of "Don't! or Stop!", a racer would subject the opposing craft to a barrage of missiles intent on sinking it. Rocks and dirt would rain down upon the racecourse, sending waves and debris flying everywhere. It was rare that a boat survived a direct hit.
It was not common that a boat reached the end of the trip to the sewer. On the rare occasions that it did often it would only end up spilling over the grating and careening down into the depths, lost forever. When it had made a successful journey through the perilous course, often a racer would become attached to his noble craft and attempt to save it from the fall. Hurriedly a hand would reach down, trying to grab the boat before it fell. Sometimes the boat was saved and carried to the beginning to race again, others it was lost.
One day a year my neighbor emptied his pool. Usually during the middle of summer when it was hotter than anything. So with the sun blazing down on us my brother and I raced from end to end of the street. Racing our seed-boats and splashing in the flow of pool water on a cloudless day. We raced and ran and played until the water stopped. It was unnoticeable at first. But as the flow weakened, the rapids grew smaller, the lakes became shallower, and the boats slowed down to a crawl. Until finally the once-a-year river dried up altogether. We would stay with it until its last. Playing until our boats were barely moving. And then finally, we would accept the truth. Ending our race, we would trudge inside. Exhausted, quiet, yet smiling.
It has been years since I raced those boats in the gutters. I don't even know if my neighbor still has a pool even. But I can always count on those hot summer memories to bring a smile.