of another steamy RVA summer.
Not so lazy for you? Well, it is true that there’s no shortage of ways to keep your crew entertained all summer long in the River City. Whether you’re hitting the summer camp circuit (and I hope the Camp Finder at RFMonline.com helped guide you in your choices!) Or hitting the pool, we hope you’re making some wonderful summer memories that will last a lifetime.
Back when we were all kids (in the olden days, as my 6-year-old calls it), the only summer camps were the sleep-away kind, with daytime recreation at home consisting mostly of TV marathons, playing in the neighborhood, or splashing at the pool.
I spent lots of my summers at my dad’s house, outside of Winston- Salem, North Carolina, and I wonder if he’ll be surprised by the things I remember most fondly from those times. Yes, the trip to Mount Mitchell was amazing, but I really loved my field trips with Dad to Winn-Dixie, getting warm fried okra from the deli, and eating all of the plums from the package while we shopped, handing just the price label and the Styrofoam tray to the lady at the register. Sure, swimming in that freezing cold mountain stream was neat, but what I really got a kick out of was helping Dad wash his jet black 1976 Cadillac Seville. And boy was he meticulous about his car’s cleanliness. To this day, in true Dad form, I threaten my kids’ lives if they touch the headliner. Of course the visit to Carowinds, North Carolina’s version of Kings Dominion, was fun, but not nearly as much fun as spending the afternoon with Dad at work behind the pharmacy counter, counting and bottling pills, measuring cough syrups, and best of all, getting my pick of expired candy! (Side story: I suspect getting an all-you-can-eat supply of expired candy probably isn’t a pharmacist’s kid’s perk anymore, but when I first moved to Richmond in the fifth grade, my dad helped me clear that awkward new-kid-on-the-block hurdle by sending me 546 mini-bags of Peanut M&Ms to help lure some new friends to my lunch table. Oh, happy days!)
Whether it was singing from the Great American Songbook with Dad and my siblings as he played his ukulele, or making one of those Chef Boyardee pizzas in the box, it was the little, and quite inexpensive things, which made for some of my fondest summertime childhood memories. I’ll never forget the time he fashioned a raft out of giant, empty cough syrup bottles from the pharmacy. You can’t buy that in a souvenir shop!
To add to your summer’s enjoyment, we’re serving up another fantastic issue of RFM. Think of it as our summer souvenir for you and your family. We hope you’ll hang onto it, along with those wonderful summer memories!