Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

To Everything Its Season . .

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

To Everything Its Season . .

Article excerpt

LAST weekend, when snow blanketed the city and I found out that the thermometer on my car came helpfully equipped with a minus sign, I found myself in a world decorated with beach balls and filled with brochures stressing the importance of a high-number sunblock.

Alas, this was not the winter getaway that I and everybody else in town was dreaming of. ("Aruba, Jamaica, oooh I want to take you.") This was not the chance to defrost I felt that I desperately needed and, frankly, was entitled to. ("Key Largo, Montego, baby, why don't we go?")

This was summer camp registration. Does this strike anyone else as a touch premature? From an organizational standpoint, I understand, there is no alternative. If plans are not made now, nothing will be ready six months hence, when school is out and there's nothing to do. If you doubt this, go ahead, take your chances. Wait until school is nearly out to see if you can find a camp with an opening for your child - any camp, let alone one featuring the sport, art or specialized activity of your kid's dreams. Maybe it will work out. But come Memorial Day, I wouldn't want to be in your sandaIs. So this alternative - the mid-winter camp registration - is very sensible. But it's still weird. Who is in the mood to make arrangements for camp, when first-semester report cards aren't even out? Summer may be a mere six months away, but it feels more like an alternate reality. It looks like it, too, in a roomful of kids bundled up like little Michelin men. We parents, clutching checkbooks and enrollment forms that seem to have been efficiently devised for admission to summer camp and/or medical school, make at least a minimal effort to sort out our particular set of hooded-jacket and jeans from all the others. Mostly we give up. Those of us with older kids at least have the advantage of height - the taller they are, they easier they are to spot. Plus, we have less worry anyway. The older set gets around just fine, and would gladly have registered without us. …

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