I’ve read enough adventure books for kids to know when I’m living in one. This past weekend I managed to gather up all my boys and head out to the Berkshire (the setting of most of my own boyhood adventures in summer camp). I took them to an old watering hole — a stream that rushes through massive boulders and spills into a collecting pool of waterhttp://www.sleepawaysummercamp.com/summer_sleep_away_book_reviews.html. As a boy, I remember a rope swing hanging from a tree over the water. I thought, what better on one of the last hot days of summer but to swing into a cool pond of spring
Naturally, my kids complained the entire time driving. These days everything is a problem. But when we pulled up and I pointed out the spot to them through the trees a quiet hush seemed to overtake them. When we walked down far enough to get a better view of the spot I remembered as a boy, I could see their eyes light up at the sight of that swinging rope hanging from a tall oak over the water. I myself couldn’t believe it was
still there after all these years. Shirts and shoes were discarded in breakneck speed as we dove into the water and climbed the embankment to the other side where the rope was hanging. One by one they gathered up their courage as they took hold of the end of the rope, climbed as high as they could and jumped a giant leap of faith into that spring pond.
Like little Tarzans they swung to their hearts content all day and late in the afternoon. They didn’t want to leave and I was thrilled to bring back my childhood adventure to them a generation later. I too swung on that rope and with each plunge into that water I felt the years melt away and for those few hours I was twelve again.
Ofer Aronskind is the author of multiple children’s mystery books.