From the time I was a small child, I’ve been enticed by sweet aromas of flowers in bloom, the leaves returning to the trees, and the freshness that’s in the air at the height of spring.
My brother’s and I often played outside on our swing set with our friends and our cousins, playing games of kickball, dodge ba ll, or Monkey In The Middle. We also like to pick dandelions, put them under each other’s chins saying, “You like butter. You like butter. You like butter,” because of the yellow glow the dandelions would make under our chins.
It was also a time when my mother was able to hang clothes out on the line, letting the air and the sun dry them. They acquired a fresh spring scent in and of themselves.
Our great-grandfather lived with us. It was at this time he began planting vegetables, such as tomatoes, cucumbers, squash, lettuce, cantaloupe, and string beans in our garden so they’d be ready in time for summer.
He assigned each of us children our own sections in the garden to care for. When the vegetables were ripe, we’d picked them together, take them into his kitchen in the basement, and he’d wash them. Our great-grandfather was a great cook. He’d often slice the potatoes and zucchini, bread them and make pancakes.
I also looked forward to Easter. Our holy week is very beautiful. Church usually takes place at night all week long, leading up to Easter. Very early in the morning on Sunday, we’d have lamb at our church, along with eggs, salad, and this sweet bread that is baked with a coin in it. Whoever receives the piece with the coin in it is considered lucky all year long.
I loved playing in the bushes of our yard when I was a kid, when my brothers, cousins and our friends would play hide and seek. There were so many places to hide in our yard.
We’d also put together little plays or skits of which we’d perform for our parents. My mom often baked cookies, and provided us with milk to drink with them.
I’d often noticed all the baby birds in the nests of our trees. When they hatched from their eggs, they baby birds were learning to fly. They were so tiny. My heart melted whenever I’d see them. I had such a fondness for all little creatures. I still do.
Squirrels are fascinating creatures to watch, especially when gathering their nuts. I often had to chase them out of our garden so they wouldn’t ruin our vegetables.
When playing on the swings, my brothers, our friends and our cousins and I would often imagine we were flying into outer space, and our swing set was a vehicle allowing for space travel, carrying us on various adventures.
Spring was always filled with many fascinating adventurers and tales. They even carried us into the very depths of our dreams. I’ll always treasure these memories of my childhood. They’ll always have a special place in my heart.
© Copyright, Kiki Stamatiou, 2015