Writing: Write about what you would do if you could re-live your childhood again.
If I could re-live my childhood, I would do everything AGAIN. I am the youngest of 4 (full-siblings, I also have 2 younger half-siblings), we were the crazy kids in the neighborhood. All the kids on the block loved to hang-out at our house. We would spend hours outside; riding bikes, water fights, climbing trees (and falling out of them), exploring our neighborhood, and everything else kids of the 80’s did. Thinking back, we would have all been placed into child protective services based on today’s standards. We would spend most days outside, experiencing life. We truly lived our childhood.
Sure we had an atari 1600 and we did play it, but that was for rainy days. If the weather was nice, we would not be inside wasting daylight. A bicycle, was freedom and we enjoyed it. Riding all over the neighborhood, to convenience stores to buy nickel gum or to this little hamburger stand on the outskirts of the neighborhood.
I remember this time when I was about 8, my twin and I hopped on our bikes and we headed to this stand for their chocolate ice cream. (I can see the building, the window you ordered from and the tables out front, but the name is not coming to me) Anyway, we rode the mile to the stand and got to the window. Out of breath and pulling out the dollar bills, we saved up, from our pockets to pay for this AMAZING little cup of chocolate ice cream. The nice lady took our order and closed the window. Scooped out two cups of chocolate ice cream and then opened the window to hand the cups to us. We were confused, she didn’t take our money. We didn’t want to take this treat without paying for it. Our mother would KILL us! The lady smiled and explained that they had closed about ten minutes before we got there, closing their registers. She couldn’t take our money. She could tell how much we wanted that ice cream and it was such a hot day, she just could not send us away without giving us the chocolate goodness we rode all the way there for. My sister and I tried to give it back, we couldn’t take it. It wasn’t right. The lady REFUSED to take it back. She motioned for us to sit at the tables, in the shade and enjoy it. We looked at each other, unsure at what to do. Again we tried to argue, but she would not have it. “Please enjoy it girls,” she said, “it is okay. I want you to have it”. My sister and I slowly walked to the table and sat down. We ate the ice cream, slowly. It was sooooooo delicious, but the entire time we felt bad. We felt like we stole the ice cream, we wanted to pay for it, we had the money. We finished our little cups, waved to the lady inside and said “thank you” for like the hundredth time when she opened the window. She ask if we enjoyed the ice cream, we both nodded and said yes. She told us to come back soon, they always have the ice cream. We told her we would be back, got on our bikes and headed home. We didn’t know if we should tell anyone we got ‘free’ ice cream. We debated all the way home, but decided we wouldn’t tell a soul. I think we kept it a secret until early adulthood. It was just two small scoops of ice cream, but we felt like the lady gave us a million dollars. It’s so silly thinking back about how we acted. That ladies kindness, thirty years later, still touches me.
We went back a few more times over the summer, always making sure we got there before they closed, so we could pay for our ice cream. The lady would always say it was nice to see us and when we would leave she would tell us to ride home safely.
I haven’t thought about this in years, a simple assignment, but tons of memories flooding my thoughts. I lived a great childhood!
Oooh, I think the place was called, Hamburger House? Guess I’ll have to ask my sister.