Ponderings for June 2011

IMG 0375

Rocket's red glare?

Well, it’s getting to be that time of year once again when people, itching to escape the confines of work and school [and, in this part of the world, the long cold winter] travel to exotic places like Kansas, Lake Okoboji, and Duluth. That’s right—summer vacation is upon us!

Like most kids growing up, I couldn’t wait for school to be out [well, there was Sarah; she loved school so much, she actually cried when classes were over]. Our family would often take trips to South Padre Island. This was long before real estate developers ruined the public beaches with “Do Not Trespass” signs warning interlopers to stay away from their hotels and condos. We probably went “beaching” four or five times a summer.

And there was the annual Fourth of July trip to be with my Dad’s family in Newgulf, Texas. Every Independence Day the company which “owned” the town [literally, if not figuratively] held a wonderful celebration in the town park. I remember the year we were scolded for shooting off bottle rockets from a hole on a fence post. It was great fun!

I also remember the year we went to Six Flags Over Texas. What a treat! It was on my birthday [or so I recall]. My favorite rides were the Runaway Mine Train, the Log Ride where everyone got soaking wet, and Pirate’s Cove, an island with a huge skull you could play in.

And the sno-cones. Weslaco, Texas, where we lived, had a little shop at the end of the main drag that had the absolute best-ever sno-cones known to humankind. I am not kidding! The ice was as fine as real snow [or so I imagined, having never seen snow before—we didn’t get much of that in the Rio Grande Valley!] The flavors were scrumptious and they used a lot of it. Not like the sno-cones you get today: hard ice, little flavoring that just coats the top. No they just poured the flavored syrup so that the snow was thoroughly drenched. Rainbow was my favorite: generous amounts of cherry, blueberry, lemon, lime, and grape. Oh my! The coconut wasn’t half bad, either.

Amid all this sun-drenched summer holiday goodness there was church [you knew I’d come around to this, eventually!]. No matter where we found ourselves on Sunday, we’d always attend worship. Us kids weren’t much for Vacation Bible School back then, though I did attend once with a friend at his church. But we did go to church as a family. Grace Episcopal saw us most Sundays. They didn’t have air-conditioning, but the open windows allowed for fresh breezes to cool us down. When the weather permitted, we had fellowship outdoors. The Kool-Aid was never sweet enough, but it was cold and wet and good. The boys would do what normal boys do, running around, teasing the girls and getting into just a little bit of mischief.

Now I know that it can be awfully tempting to want to sleep in on Sundays in the summer. And, goodness knows, once or twice or even three times isn’t gonna hurt you any. But, wherever you find yourself this summer, spend a little time with your faith community, giving thanks to God for the opportunity to enjoy the gifts that summer brings. Like family, friends,  the wonders of nature, the thrill of a roller-coaster ride, and sno-cones. Please, don’t forget the sno-cones!

Thanks be to God!

© 2016 PGRider  E-mail me