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The Hike

Erika L.
The Hike
Summary: I’ve always thought that the most important part of a boy’s life is between the ages of 11 and 14. That’s when he starts becoming himself in small ways. The weeknight drinker has his first beer, the wife beater starts smacking his sister, casanova takes his first girl down to the river for ice cream and a kiss. So when something big happens, something like a guy’s dad leaves or his mom gets sent away or his brother goes to jail for attempted robbery of a deli, that changes the adult who the kid will grow up to be. Regardless of what goes on, good or bad, that time is the most important.
I was just about to go into the sixth grade the year our cul-de-sac lost one kid. Writing about it now, I can still remember the blaring mix of high summer crickets and television on the morning we set off. There are a lot of things I’ll forget, but I hope I never forget the beginning of that day.

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