Reminiscing on the years of my childhood, a particular summer characterized by bouncing horizons and a bold ambition, prevails as one of my most cherished memories. I cant help but smile as I recall the summer ruled by my pogo-stick, the timeless experiences with this beloved toy remaining vivid in my mind. It began with the crinkling sound of the polka-dot wrapping paper tickling my ears as I tore into the wondrously large box containing my 8th birthday present. Violently ripping apart the perfectly tied red ribbon, I squealed in delight! My excitement was immeasurable as I feasted my eyes upon the lime green pedals, and the hot pink turbo springs running down its shiny black pole, with the words ‘X-tream 2000’ stamped down the side of its cool metal frame. As the ‘brand new toy smell’ invaded my nostrils, I couldn’t wait another moment to try out my newly acquired possession. I remember my heart racing the first time I gripped the bright orange handles and held tight with white knuckles, hearing the pulsing squeak of the flexing springs. Even after experiencing the pain of repeatedly eating asphalt within my first day of pogo stick experimentation, I had fallen in love. Caught up in my newfound excitement, I made the decision that I was going to not only break, but crush the world record for most consecutive pogo-jumps by the end of the summer. I knew this would be no easy task, but I was a whole-heartedly determined 8 year old. I was going to be famous! My scrawny legs, occasionally collapsing in a fit of intense cramps, began to bronze as I spent countless summer hours practicing outside of my suburban house. The pogo-stick was my obsession. Using the driveway, back deck, or any other flat surface I determined as sufficient jumping grounds, I continued to work towards my goal despite the bruises obtained from my multiple crash landings. The rubber handles wore my palms raw, but I would not surrender. Once seemingly important possessions such as my prized Barbie collection, began to fade from my interests, and I became completely preoccupied with my pogo stick, enthralled by the lure of fame once I had accomplished the world record. Envisioning my picture in the local newspaper after revealing my pogo skills to the astonished world, and similar fantasies that ran through my thoughts as they drifted to the rhythmic thuds on the ground, filled me with the motivation to succeed. My consecutive jump-count climbed higher and higher, and each evening I retreated indoors for dinner with satisfaction of my continued improvement. But eventually, the long days of sunshine and freedom drew to an inevitable close, and I reluctantly returned to the preoccupation of schoolwork. My pogo stick began spending more time tangled in spider webs in the dim corner of the garage, and my fascination with world-wide fame started to dwindle with the box of Barbies in my closet.
August 30, 2009