Sprinklers In Summer

Darren leant on the back verandah railing, twisted the bottle cap off a beer and watched the summer sun begin to dip lower than cleavage in a bikini.  The beer was a cool cascade after an afternoon working in the yard.  The scent of mowed lawn was intoxicating, blended with the jasmine across the back fence.

His twenties were receding and summer reminded him of ice cream and watermelon, sunburn and sandy feet.  He remembered not wanting summer to end because it meant shiny new black leather school shoes and socks and blisters, rather than bare feet and board shorts.

He waved to his wife, Robyn, through the lounge room window.  She thought he was mad working in the summer heat, waving back at him from air-conditioned comfort.

“Last job,” thought Darren as he skipped down the back steps.  He dragged the garden hose and positioned the sprinkler near the summer flowers.  Sipping from his beer he turned the tap and watched the three-legged whirligig spin into action.  A hundred thousand watery prisms spun away, refracting summer’s afternoon light.  He drank deeply in his nostrils the moistening earth.

He inched closer to the perimeter of the sprinkler, letting the drops touch his feet.  They were icy at first, skittering over the bare, sun-drenched skin of his feet.  He took a step back but the watery touch was inviting.  He let the droplets caress his feet while sipping at his beer.  The liquids combined, refreshing parched bodies of earth and flesh.

Darren was buoyed by the dizzying elation of a hundred thousand droplets.  He dashed back to the verandah and put down his beer.  Looking around, his t-shirt and shorts were quickly discarded.  With childish glee he ran back to the sprinkler and cavorted under the water in nothing but his underpants.

Leaping and jumping over the sprinkler he felt like a child again.  He ran back to the tap and turned it up higher until the spray reached above his head.  He stood at the centre of the sprinkler and let the sweat and dirt and grass drip off his body.  The grass squelched under his feet and Darren watched the mud ooze up between his toes.  He wiggled his feet as water dripped off the end of his nose.

“Having fun there, sweetheart?”  Robyn stood on the verandah, hand on her hip and a glass of lemonade in the other.

“Yep.”

“And I see you’re wearing your best yard work underpants.”

Darren looked down, his fringe flopping in front of his eyes in wet strands.

“Yep.”

Robyn laughed, bent down and turned off the sprinkler.  The water fell into the lawn, seeping away with pops and crackles.  Darren simply grinned.

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13 responses to “Sprinklers In Summer

  1. Lovely, lovely, lovely. As a Queenslander growing up with no pool – many a day spent under the sprinkler – fabulous the way you evoke that initial shock of the water and then the abandonment to the moment. Thank you!!

  2. Adam you do the best job of describing the summer. I’m feeling all depressed now cause summer’s over here and I didn’t run about in the garden in my underwear!!

  3. This is such a lovely story Adam. I spent many a summer digging my toes in the mud of the garden and then plunging into the river to swim it off. Thanks so much for bringing those memories about.

  4. Very nice. And that’s something I’ve always wanted to do after a hot day working in the yard.

  5. Growing up in the freezing cold North East of England, and literally cannot imagine the bliss this guy so clearly feels at running around under a sprinkler in the afternoon heat. Yet you’ve captured it so well, I think I now have some idea!

  6. Ah, to be a kid again… 😉 Great description!

  7. No violence, no twist, no surprise – just a nice summer day. I wish the same to you, Adam.

  8. loved the sensuousness of this, the feel of the water against skin. Mind you, its chuffing cold & overcast here in London. No Summers days left for us this year.

  9. Loved the joy of summer memories this brought back. Running through the sprinklers was one of my most favorite things to do!

  10. Loved this. The description of simply enjoying the summer afternoon in the cool sprinklers was fabulous. Good story!

  11. Lovely! Nothing satisfies a hot summer afternoon like a romp in the sprinklers.

    Just love how he captures the moment. It’s the simple pleasures.

    Great story, Adam!

  12. Joy! I love summer joy and you’ve captured it wonderfully. Good for Darren.

  13. Brilliant descriptions, it felt like I was there with him – lovely. Thank you, great work

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