“I’d give all wealth that years have piled
… to be once more a little child,
for one bright summer day.”
~ Lewis Carroll
Sunny, hot and humid summer days bring back memories of growing up in La Crescenta. The long days with nothing to do, yet memories of days filled with so much. Nothing like a little boredom to spark a child’s natural creativity. No activity-filled calendars were needed. With the possible exceptions of summer school and a family vacation, time was unlimited and had no parameters.
When school ended in June, the weather was still on the cool side. “June gloom” dominated, often with fog and drizzle. Memories dictate that the real heat of summer came after 4th of July. But, in more recent years, it felt like summer weather came earlier. Global warming would support this, but actual records indicate otherwise with very little change in our average temperatures. Weather in the Foothills takes no stand on this controversial subject. Here I will gladly announce, “I am just an amateur weather watcher!”
It was easy to be an expert at “being a kid” during those (almost) three glorious months. The only requirement was to roam around, either with friends or alone, and to explore, pretend and play. Easy enough!
Few homes had air conditioning, during the 1960s. To beat the heat, it was an absolute necessity to get out of bed early, hop on your bike and ride up and down the street to see if any friends were awake yet.
Most of us went to summer school, which held during the first six weeks of vacation. Some classes taught “the basics” while others were “for enrichment.” My elementary school was Valley View, the newest and most modern in GUSD. But summer school was held at Monte Vista where rows of connected wooden desks (inkwells included) in the classrooms greeted us. Where did they all go?
The rest of the summer included at least one, if not all, of the following adventures (keep in mind, no known safety rules were broken. It was the ’60s):
• Playing and swimming all day, without sunscreen. Sea & Ski and Coppertone were suntan lotions intended mostly for the beach.
• Shoes disappeared until September. Bare feet ruled the streets, even while catching lizards down in the wash.
• The ice cream man and kids with pools were your best friends. Sprinklers were acceptable.
• Sleeping outside with hopes of a thunder and lightening storm.
Basically, your neighborhood became a summer long, block party!
The weather this week? Increasing temperatures, around 100 degrees, are predicted through Friday. The extended forecast is more challenging and interesting as subtropical moisture brings a chance of thunderstorms Sunday and Monday. The cloud cover will cool things down a bit, but increased humidity take over the comfort controls.
CV life will become a little sticky. Ice cream and sprinklers are still okay.
Sue Kilpatrick is a Crescenta Valley
resident and Official Skywarn Spotter for the National Weather Service.
Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.