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Groovy Highway: Summer Breeze in 1972. May We Never Pass this Way Again.

It’s a sunny Summer day in 1972. I can smell the honeysuckle in the air. A bit humid in the sun, but a nice breeze if I can find some shade. I skid my bicycle along the sidewalk . . . leaving the desired long black skidmark from my wide ‘Cheater Slick’ white letter tire on the rear.  As I fishtail to a halt, I throw my bicycle to the ground. The banana seat goes slightly askew due to a loose bolt that tightens it. I’ll fix that later.

I’m a skinny 9 year old little boy with an avocado green AM transistor radio in my tiny hand. My dark black hair is thick and long. It’s sweaty. It’s in my eyes; yet I don’t care. I wear no shirt, nor shoes; for it’s not required. My blue jean shorts are ripped and frayed. My feet are callused and filthy with dirt. They have assorted cuts and a swollen big toe on my right foot. The blood has dried on it now from stubbing it earlier; running down the sidewalk. No time to go home for a Band-aid and Bactine. No one there anyway.  No one will notice. No one really cares. It does hurt, but I can deal with it. A little pain won’t kill me.

Through a small little white plastic earplug speaker pushed deep in one ear; cord attached to the radio, I’m listening to ‘Summer Breeze’ by Seals & Crofts on WPGC top forty station in Washington DC.

Finding a quiet, shady spot in the city can be a bit of a challenge. I spot a patch of tall green grass growing through the cracks and crevasses under the shady concrete overpass. I had been there before. I happened upon it in my travels in the neighborhood amidst the sidewalk, the pavement and the traffic of the concrete jungle. Things like that, a smart nine year old boy remembers..

I put my hands behind my head and I lie back in the angle of concrete with the soft green grass around me. I feel the cool cement on my back. Like I said, “No shirt required.” The slant of the cement allows me to look up at the bottom of the overpass above me. It’s like a cradle of concrete nestled safely under the busy traffic. Like a cocoon. I can hear the rush and I feel the rumble of cars overhead and it’s magical. It feels like having a super power to be underneath all of the cars and trucks running over me and not leaving a scratch. I kinda forgot about my toe now. It stopped throbbing.  I feel no pain. . .  only the warm Summer breeze across my face.   Enjoy your Summer.

Until next month… Keep the rubber side down and stay groovy. Peace. -the Random Prophet. Thoughts? email me at | HashtagWV #101. May 2018

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HashtagWV Art & Entertainment is a high-quality print and digital multimedia platform for all things West Virginia and the greater Appalachian region. The editorial focus is local music, unique shopping, the arts, events, theatre, and food and drinks.