Little Charlie and Me

Little Charlie and Me

A Story by Lea Sheryn
"

Memories of a summertime friend

"

Little Charlie and Me

By Lea Sheryn

 

Summertime, for the children of Long Beach Island, meant long days on the hot sands of the beach and cool nights sitting out on sundecks.  The sound of waves crashing on the shore was a part of the atmosphere along with the salt sea spray that seemed to be everywhere.  There was great excitement about living in a beach community that everyone felt but no one seemed to notice; it was simply a way of life. 

 

Little Charlie was a summer kid.  Being a summer kid meant we only got to see him during the summer.  For the rest of the year, he lived in Philadelphia with his big Italian family.  As April turned to May and May to June, my brother and I began to anticipate the return of Little Charlie to our small beach community along the Jersey Shore. 

 

First, Uncle Charlie had to come to open up his summer cottage.  Some time around the third weekend in May, his aqua-colored Cadillac would pull into our driveway.  Now, to be honest, Charlie wasn’t really our uncle; he was a very close family friend but he was jolly enough to be a special-type of relative, by proxy.  When he came, he always brought raviolis for dinner along with a big loaf of freshly baked Italian bread and a bottle of Chianti.  Although there were only five of us sitting at the table, it was always as though there was a party in the house when Charlie was around. 

 

As soon as Memorial Day came around, things really started to heat up on the Island in more ways than one.  Of course, I mean the red mercury climbed up into the highest points of the outdoor thermometers but I also mean the crowds started to roll in.  Summer people from the cities packed themselves on towels and foldable chairs on the beaches as though they were all canned sardines.  The ice cream shops and miniature golf courses were lined up with mothers and fathers and little children in drippy bathing suits with nary a care in the world. 

 

The first day Little Charlie came was a Red Letter Day both for us and for him.  What he wanted to do most was stay at our house.  Our home was his home all the long summer days and that was just fine with us.  Everybody loved Little Charlie�"he was that type of kid. 

 

Little Charlie had a little brother named Mike.  Mike was the type of boy who knew what he wanted from life from the first moment he could speak.  The movie ROCKY had just come out in theaters that summer and that’s who the little boy wanted to be.  All through June, July and August, we were called upon to test his muscles.  And, oh boy, that kid was the strongest little bruiser on the Island that year!  Everybody loved Mike as much as they loved Little Charlie.  Those two kids had personality and to boot. 

 

I guess I was about fourteen the last year we lived on Long Beach Island.  Little Charlie was about ten and Mike probably somewhere in the range of eight.  As it always is when one has to leave a place where one has lived all their lives, there is a certain sadness about leaving.  Maybe it’s not really the place but the people who are hard to leave behind.  Saying good-bye is never a happy circumstance; saying good-bye to lifelong friends is a misery.  It is the memories that linger, down through the years, of two little boys wearing wet swimsuits that drip salt sea water between their toes while sand clings to their legs in those long ago summer days of our childhood. 

 

Those days and those boys will never be forgotten.  When nostalgia flourishes it’s magic wand in the realms of memory, the beach, the bright yellow sun and Little Charlie with his brother, Mike, appear again just as they were in the sweet summer days of my carefree youth.     

© 2019 Lea Sheryn


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Featured Review

Life is threaded with memories such as these. It is wonderful to reflect and remember the good times and people we no longer see. We can smile and let them go until next time. I love your descriptive writing and the characters you have introduced Lea. You have a very comfortable style of writing which makes for easy reading. I like that.

Chris

Posted 3 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

3 Months Ago

Lovely, Christine! Did you have a nice bickie too?
Christine Anne Shaw

3 Months Ago

Biscuits off at the mo. Watching my weight :)
Lea Sheryn

3 Months Ago

Shame. I used to love the chocolate Cadbury buscuits and the Digestives, when I spent summers with .. read more



Reviews

Hiraeth! I never had to leave my birth place, I have been living on the same house since birth. But really it is a nice story. Loved to read. Thank you.

Posted 1 Month Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

1 Month Ago

Thank you for your review! It's hard to leave ones birth place. So many friends to leave behind. .. read more
This is a lovely story, full of fond memories. Thanks for the trip back to a time and place that warmed my heart and made me smile.

Posted 2 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

2 Months Ago

You're welcome, Samuel. I'm very fond of this story because the characters are real friends from my.. read more
this is a great story,i enjoyed it

Posted 2 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

2 Months Ago

Thank you, wordman.
 wordman

2 Months Ago

you`re welcome
What a heartwarming story. I grew up in Jersey and spent a lot of time at the Jersey shore. I can relate to everything you have written. I called my parents' friends "aunt" or "uncle" too. It was a sign of respect. Great character development throughout. Have you tried to find Charlie and Mike? With the internet it might not be too difficult. I enjoyed your story. Lydi**

Posted 2 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

2 Months Ago

Wow! Lydia, we have a lot in common. I grew up on LBI. Yes, I've connected with Charlie and Mike a.. read more
Lydia

2 Months Ago

Yes, we do. Glad you were able to reconnect withh them!
Lea Sheryn

2 Months Ago

Me too. We fell into a new friendship as though the old one had never ended.
Some of my fondest memories are of summers as a little girl. Summer vacations from school were always anticipated with bated breath, and I remember marking the days down on my calendar until it began. It's all palpable here - you've captured the magic and ambiance of those golden days, and the people our hearts will long remember. Wonderful writing, Lea!

Posted 3 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

3 Months Ago

Thank you, Kelly. I have very fond memories of my summer vacations.
Nice wee trip down nostalgia lane, can feel the sunlight on my skin and had a flashback to my childhood friends, enjoyed

Posted 3 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

3 Months Ago

Thank you. Good memories are always enjoyable things.
I grew up at a recreational area with a 15-mile-long lake, so I know this life, where you have "Summer Friends" (different from those we go to school with during the rest of the year). You use great details to show this kind of life & your characters come alive with animated descriptions of their actions. This sounds like an oral storytelling session, becuz you insert yourself into the story as you tell it, with phrases that indicate you remember it this way, etc. In places, your storytelling could be tighter if you eliminated a few of the "extra phrases" that don't further the storyline. Example in first paragraph: "There was great excitement about living blah-blah-blah" . . . this is passive voice . . . & active voice would sound more like this: "Everyone danced and conversed with lively laughter when the Jersey Shore starts popping for summer." See how the action can be expressed in more immediate dynamic terms, instead of opening your scene with generalized descriptions -- "there was great excitement" . . . ??? After the first paragraph, your writing becomes more immediate & dynamic . . . just a sluggish start to the story (((HUGS))) Fondly, Margie

Posted 3 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

3 Months Ago

Thanks, Margie. This is a true story about friends I grew up with at the Jersey Shore. I'm sure I .. read more
You've really expressed the mood and scene of summer with this write. Add in some more Mike and Charlie doings and include yourself in the scene, not just the narrator. There is some repetition here, just reword or combine for stronger narration. There's a lot of great character images here. Keep writing this story.

Posted 3 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

3 Months Ago

Thank you! I'm sure I will revisit this one at some time in the future.
Life is threaded with memories such as these. It is wonderful to reflect and remember the good times and people we no longer see. We can smile and let them go until next time. I love your descriptive writing and the characters you have introduced Lea. You have a very comfortable style of writing which makes for easy reading. I like that.

Chris

Posted 3 Months Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Lea Sheryn

3 Months Ago

Lovely, Christine! Did you have a nice bickie too?
Christine Anne Shaw

3 Months Ago

Biscuits off at the mo. Watching my weight :)
Lea Sheryn

3 Months Ago

Shame. I used to love the chocolate Cadbury buscuits and the Digestives, when I spent summers with .. read more

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Added on June 26, 2019
Last Updated on June 27, 2019
Tags: memories, summertime, friend

Author

Lea Sheryn
Lea Sheryn

Sarasota, FL



About
I love to write! To have the ability to put words together to express myself is an ability that I cherish. Working for years to strengthen my talent, I am a self taught Word Weaver. Up until now, I.. more..

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