Growing up in a place like Salt Spring has left me with many fond childhood memories. I was lucky enough to live very close to two families with children around the same age, so I had two good friends within walking distance of my house. Right next door was Ian, 2 years younger than me and 1 year older than my brother and still one of my closest friend. Four doors down the road was Sarah, my very best friend in the whole world – to this day. Many of my favourite memories involve these two.
Today I would like to share a story about a rainy day at Sarah’s house. I don’t remember what year this was, but we were still in elementary school I think, or maybe middle school. Just old enough that our parents would let us walk to each other’s houses by ourselves.
I was over at Sarah’s for the afternoon and it was raining. I guess we got bored with playing inside and we decided the best thing to do would be to put on T-shirts and shorts and rubber boots and go outside. Sarah had a really long driveway with lots of potholes. So we ran outside, up the driveway, in the pouring rain and jumped in all the puddles. The aim was to get as wet and cold as possible. After we had jumped in all the puddles and ran up the whole driveway, we thought we weren’t wet enough. So we started running around and dancing in the middle of the road. Salt Spring is a pretty quiet place, especially in the Fall and Winter, so there were no cars around and we had the road to ourselves. This was before the days of iPods or portable speakers (or at least before the days where our parents were willing to buy them for us), so when I say dance, I mean we danced to whatever music we could make up or remember. I don’t remember if we sang out loud, or if we just danced to the music in our heads, but I’m quite certain we looked a bit nuts to anyone who may have passed us!
Once we were sufficiently exhausted and soaking wet, we went back down to Sarah’s house and changed into warm, dry clothes and drank hot chocolate by the fire. That’s another perk of island life – wood-burning fireplaces. Nothing is as cozy as a fireplace.
I’m sure Sarah and I did this more than once and perhaps this story is an amalgamation of several times like that, but this is how I remember it. This to me is telling of what childhood can be like on Salt Spring – carefree, outdoors, and a little weird. Not to mention wet and muddy.
I don’t have any photos of Sarah and I dancing in the rain, but I did find some photos of us playing dress up.