Just a little short story based on various people and various evenings.
Sitting underneath the abandoned swing set in your backyard, I reflect momentarily on how I shouldn’t have worn my new jeans because I knew they’d get dirty. But then I quit thinking because when I think, it makes too much noise and right now I don’t want anyone to find me. You all are making so much noise running around the lawn searching for me. You look under the porch, but of course I wouldn’t hide there because I don’t know how to climb the fence, even though everyone else does.
He finds me first and slides into the little playhouse silently, grinning. But you’re on his heels. It’s impossible for the rest of you to stay quiet while we wait for the others to find us. Even when we aren’t speaking, we’re loud. We breathe loudly, smile loudly, and blink loudly. At night, all the sounds are amplified, so we’re found in a split second. New round.
You and I stroll around the yard arm-in-arm, discussing (loudly) where they might theoretically be hiding. When we get bored with talking about the game, we talk about life. Everybody is listening from their hiding spot, but it doesn’t matter that much. They watch from behind the trees, laughing at us. We laugh constantly, so it’s a pretty normal thing to hear.
When we’re done playing, we like to sprawl out somewhere. Actually, some of us sprawl and some prefer to sit. There’s an art to sprawling correctly. It’s correct to call a seat before you get there. It’s incorrect to take a seat that’s been called. It’s incorrect to sprawl without at least an iced tea, if not a whole plate of food. It’s correct to ask people if they would slide over to make room. It’s perfectly acceptable to just sit there and listen to everyone else talk.
We eat enormous plates of peach cobbler, and some of us eat enormous plates of peach cobbler twice. They have to be enormous because someone might want to grab a fork and eat some of yours. This tends to be a matter of much controversy as some of us like to share food and others don’t, which is silly because we’re like family. I like it because it’s one of the few times that I don’t feel like I’m inconveniencing someone to ask for it. I know you don’t mind.
Cameras shutters are always clicking. Every few minutes, I look up and the flash goes off. It gets more and more blinding as the night goes on, then you take your camera indoors. All the picture-taking is good because I’d like to have an album full of these nights. Full of summer.