Growing up in Kansas, I had to walk everywhere. I walked to school. I walked home from school. Sometimes I’ve had to walk to the store. Summertime is when I would find myself doing the most walking. My mom’s job had her working quite a bit and I found myself at home by myself. If we wanted to go anywhere, visit friends or have any fun, I had to walk. When I was in middle school, I had a best friend that lived about a mile or so away. If we wanted to hang out, we had to walk because our mothers were never home. Annie would call me on the landline to let me know that she was free to hang out. “Meet me at the circle.” she’d say.
When I was in middle school, I had a best friend that lived about a mile or so away from my house. If we wanted to hang out, we had to walk. Our mothers were rarely home. Annie would call me on the landline to let me know that she was free to hang out. “Meet me at the circle.” she’d say. I would walk down my block until I reached the point where my street met 29th street. I’d run across the busy street until I reached the other side. I’d would continue to walk down the street until I reached McClure. At this point, I usually could see The Circle.
The Circle was a small cul-de-sac that was the entrance of a run down apartment complex called McClure. The middle was lined with trees that hid a small unkempt pond of koi fish. It was our designated meeting spot as well as the halfway point between both of our houses. I usually was the first one to arrive at The Circle. I’d down near the pond and watch the fish waiting for Annie’s arrival. It would distract me until I’d look up to see Annie walking down the hill, headphones in, listening to the latest tunes on her MP3 player. I walk up to greet her as she took her headphones out. Annie usually would come over to my house because her mom didn’t like when friends were over when she wasn’t there.
We’d walk together to my house talking about boys, school, and life. We’d pass across the busy street, darting from unsuspecting cars until we reached the other end. Sometimes if any of us had money, we’d stop at the Taco Casa in the small strip mall. Annie was the one who usually had money. Her mom would give her a couple of bucks for chores around the house. It was only enough to get us a burrito that she’d gratefully split.
My mother usually left a house full of food, a pitcher of Kool-Aid and a freezer of popsicles for us in her absence. Annie loved when she would open the fridge to find it blue. We’d usually put on some music from our personalized playlist and mess around on our MySpace pages trying to find the perfect layout.
We’d usually walk back to The Circle again and part ways. We had a lot of great times here.