A colder and deeper layer of water in a lake.
This one reminded me of a time in my youth, MG/Early teens, that I spent with my cousins in a sleepy little rural town. It was a 'wonder years' type of experience that I cherish.
We ran around unsupervised, as if there were no such thing as evil in the world. We rode bikes and skateboards down to the lake, stripped down to our suits and swam out to the floating dock. The girls layed out to tan while the boys performed cannon balls at just the right angles to disrupt our peaceful sun worship. We squealed and laughed and talked about all that was important in our tiny little world. Every once in a while we dove off the edge into the refreshing water to break the heat. Then one cousin suggested a competition worthy of only the most daring soul. The task was this: dive under the dock, grab the anchoring rope and descend hand over hand as far as your breath allowed. You would know how deep you went because after the first 15 feet the water temperature would change, and again every 10 feet after that.
The first time your toes dipped down into the layer of cold water was exhilarating. You pushed your way through and the coolness washed over your entire body, then your toes touched warmth again. Cool, warm, cool. The sensations kept you wanting to push further, all the while calculating distance in the back of your mind, until the desire to breathe came to the forefront. One more level and you would let your survival instinct drag you back up through the parfait of contrasting temperatures. Your face broke the surface and you were gasping and laughing and shouting your amazing depth count to the astonishment of your peers.
One summer day on the lake stretched out for an eternity. When the sun began to set we swam back to the shore, and rode to the house where we were greeted with burgers on the grill and soda bottles on ice. Homemade ice cream, and turns riding around the block on the back of our uncle's motorcycle. At bed time, we stayed up under the covers with flashlights, reading. Everything was right in the world.
How about you? Any stories from a childhood summer that you hold dear? Feel free to share, I love stories. :^)