By Eric Gerlach –
I get very jealous when I see young kids running around, no responsibilities, no worries. I want to be one of those kids again, just for one more day. Playing in the warm mud, eating wet, dirty worms, the boy stuff that older guys wish they could still do.
It’s probably going to be some of the best memories when you get old to take you back to that one not-so-sturdy tree fort you built with your best friend.
When you get older you lose that sense of adventure. You get other things on your mind such as work, school, cars, girls.
When I actually have free time on a nice afternoon I want to spend my time in the shining sun laying on the staining, wet grass. Even if I attempt to go and play on the squeaky swing set, the one with the rusty swings and the splintery play-house. I never get around to it because I end up being inside working on other things.
I got my first job in eighth grade and that’s when I think, although I did not know it yet, I lost my child hood. I’m glad I got that job in eighth grade so I can have a car now, but when I look back, it wasted a lot of times where I could have made memories.
He knocked my tooth out while playing freeze tag, that’s how I met my first best friend.He couldn’t even pronounce my name right, but we connected instantly. I first invited him to come and play Hot Wheels with me. That became our daily job when we were home schooled together in the second grade. Putting together those bright neon green tracks, with the unrealistic super cars they just appealed to us like cake appeals to fat kids.
We also grew up at this church camp together with little white cabins and Sunday school services. As kids we hated going to services, but we put up with them so we could go in the poison ivy-filled woods to build our forts. Now these were not just any forts, these were state-of-the-art. Filled with booby-traps and wooden stick swords so we could defend it. No lie, but we actually had to defend them. You see, other kids at this camp loved destroying other forts so they could be the “king of the jungle,” which in boys’ logic, naturally led to war.
For the most part this war was mellow. But as we grew up, it kept getting more dangerous, with kids ending up in the hospital. Toward the end of war days the opponents focused on recruiting new soldiers instead of building a fort.
When my friend and I started being lower on the food chain we decided to rebel and start our own army. We kind of added to the problem but boys gotta do what they gotta do. We ended up winning the last battle and claiming the title of champion. Sometimes I see these “soldiers” and all I can say is we changed a lot.
We reminisce on those days now that we’re grown up with sports and jobs and cars and dates.
But all we really want is one more day to be a kid.