Sunday, August 9, 2009

Summer in the City

As the mercury threatens to reach the century mark today, unbelievably I'm lamenting the imminent demise of summer. In the many childless years I had since leaving school, summer was simply a time to put up with uncomfortable weather.

But now that children are in my life I have come to love summer. I like not having to rush around so much getting everybody ready for school and work. The fewer obligations and slightly slower flow of life this time of year are very welcome. I love the still too infrequent days that I have the two kids to myself to explore the city, taking them on the Metra and the El just for the ride.

The best part of all this summer is that my son has finally discovered baseball. We've already been to a Cubs game and in a couple of weeks I've gotten him to agreee to go down to the Cell for a Sox game. He was turned off by the noise of the fireworks four years ago. Practically every day we're outside playing a little one on one baseball game that we invented. As is his nature about his new passions, he's obsessed. If you see a little boy on the street wearing a Cubs hat, winding up and pitching an imaginary baseball, it's probably my boy.

When people have asked him what he did this summer, he invariably tells them; "I played baseball with my Dad." For a father there is nothing in the world better than hearing that.

Summer's almost over but we still have our vacation to look forward to. And of course the Sox game. We're going to hear Beethoven's Ninth in Millennium Park next week. Hopefully we'll be able to catch the Zoppe Circus which we see every year. Then summer will be really over and the obligations of normal life will return. There will still be lots to look forward to. The World Series, my son's first opera at the Lyric, (Tosca) and Halloween (Charlie Chaplin and Frieda Kahlo, two probable costume candidates) to name just a few.

But as I've gotten older, I have learned not to put so much into looking forward. Now I prefer to concentrate on the here and now. Time just goes by so damned fast these days.

So today it's summer, it's gonna be stinking hot, and I'm going to love every moment of it.

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