Sunday, September 7, 2014

Recreating a First Memory

I have this old, old, old image in my head of Buckingham Fountain at night. All around me is darkness, except for the multicolored streams of water dancing on the fountain: bright reds and yellows, cool blues and purples, a shock of yellow gold here and there. I'm a tiny little infant being held in my mother's arms as she walks about the fountain accompanied by my father.

I consider this image my first memory. I think it's my first memory. But how can I really be sure? And given that visits to places like Buckingham were a pretty regular activity for my parents back then (the mid-1970s), it's possible that it's not really a first-hand memory but a story that was told to me, and that I subsequently committed it to my mind as my first memory.

Anyway, today (Sunday, September 7, 2014) proved to be a bright and sunny day with warm comfortable weather. Not something you always get in Chicago (we only just had a week with some extremely humid days followed by destructive storms). So, I asked my wife if she would indulge me in taking our son Jack to Buckingham Fountain to "recreate" this memory of mine (which may or may not be true). However, given that we are both still chronically tired from the normal sleep-challenged cycle of baby diaper changing-feeding-sleeping-pooping every two to three hours, both day and night, I decided we wouldn't wait until the evening.

All in all, it was a perfect albeit brief family outing for the three of us. Here's to hoping he remembers it. And if he doesn't, I have definite photographic proof.

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