I don’t remember much of any day. I have small pieces of time and that’s all. I remember scents and feelings and sometimes images. I know I traveled by Greyhound to visit my friend. My parents put me on a bus. I know that I went to Falkland in B.C. from Calgary and I know I was twelve or thirteen years old (he moved away after grade six). I remember awakening on the front lawn of a farm, surrounded by rabbits. It was the beginning of a summer day at five in the morning, the sun wasn’t up yet and it was cold. I was curled into a sleeping bag with my head on a crisp white pillow slip. And there were a hundred rabbits. Rabbits everywhere; a fantastic secret revealed somewhere between dew-fall, dreams, and the frantic heartbeat of a boys day.
And I remember it took that whole day to go from the farm to the store and return on horseback. I don’t remember a saddle or stirrups or even reins, but I remember 3 boys on the same horse. Mark in the middle, I was on the back and Shane in front of his big brother warning against a trot, complaining continuously about how much it would hurt his balls.
We went to the store to get popsicles because it was so hot out. The trip to the store and back was the hottest day I can remember. The sun was relentless and we were speechless most of the way. Thirsty and thinking of the relief of something cold. I don’t think I’ll ever taste another plain orange popsicle like that again. There is no measure equal to it.
I don’t remember a dinner. I don’t remember a room or a wall or a door. I don’t remember leaving, getting on the bus to go home. I don’t remember a single moment from the rest of that whole summer. I couldn’t put two other days of that year together if you asked me to. But I know that no plain thing made of orange and sugar and water could taste that fine ever again.