Summer and the Water

There’s something magical about water in the summer– something that makes teenagers fall in love, I think.


My curiosity about Joe turned into a full-fledged crush on a summer camping trip to the lake with the youth group.

Of course, I figured it was all still going to be from afar, because there is no way to look cute when you’ve showered in a public bathroom with your eyes open in case a roach came at you. Or when you’ve taken a ride in a speedboat without a hair band. Or when you’ve decided that being barefooted is the new cool thing and you end up cutting your foot on a sharp rock and limping back to your shoes, defeated.

But something about that water made him see past all that stuff I guess, because he flirted with me the whole weekend, and then asked me out a few weeks later.


Years later, Luke and I hiked out to a river behind his house. We were just friends at that point, still, even though I was being a complete dumbass about it and he was following me around like a lovesick puppy.

When we got out to our destination, the rain that had been threatening suddenly let loose in a downpour like I’ve never seen before or since. We were immediately soaked completely through with nowhere to take shelter, and we laughed and screamed and hid under a pine tree that offered almost no protection.

And I was not such a dumbass that I didn’t feel an electric pull between us– like a premonition that this “just friends” thing was not going to work, and I should just give in and kiss him while he was drenched with his soggy hair in his eyes.

I didn’t kiss him.

Somehow I missed the whole memo that getting caught in the rain with someone is incredibly romantic and you are supposed to suddenly realize that you are madly in love, and share your first movie-worthy kiss, sopping and steamy.

In the end, we just trudged back to his house, squelching in our ruined shoes… which is not really that romantic.

But the tug of that electricity in the rain never left, and you know how we ended up, so maybe it was romantic, in a way. I guess that’s the magic of summer and the water.

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