It is Late July.
It’s hot days spent riding bikes, picking berries, shelling peas, building forts, reading in the hammock or treehouse, or watching the landscape pass through the back seat window, or bickering with your siblings, as your dad drives towards the mountains or beach or wherever your family is spending its vacation.
It’s twilight spent chasing fireflies, playing hide and seek, or swinging on the porch swing, listening to your grandma sing and being grateful for the cool breeze and the cherry pie she made you.
It’s nights spent sneaking out of the house to stargaze (or having your dad wake you up to see shooting stars), walking the beach under the moon, or camping out in your back yard, trying to stay up all night and telling ghost stories. It’s dogs barking miles away as the crickets chirp and frogs sing.
Late July is when childhood memories are made. It is county fairs and weekend trips to the beach and summer camp and family reunions. It’s reaching towards independence and freedom, while echoing the pasttimes of generations of Americans. It’s days that blend into each other and soft nights that stand out like gems. It is Norman Rockwell and fireworks and boardwalks and sailboats.
August is hotter and more humid and is filled with haze and the dizzying buzz of cicadas. By August, the games have been played, the camps have been attended and the newness is off the summer. But July: July is High Summer and a time when the magic of childhood imagination rules.