Childhood Holidays

I cannot remember too much from my childhood holidays.

We could not afford to travel.

I suppose, most of the summers, I was home with my younger brother.

The only time I went to a camp, was when I was eight years old. I don’t remember too much, but I spent most of my money on a tiny fluorescent bear. I kept the bear for years on my school desk, but then it went gone. I have no idea when.

With my family, we went to a family vacation only twice – when I was eight, and ten. Those days, we still had socialism in Hungary, and workers could apply for “company vacations”. These two days, my father and one of his colleagues in the factory could split a two-weeks vacation. So we spent one week in the mountains when I was eight, then one week at the lake Balaton when I was ten.

Again, I don’t remember too much.

Then as I grew older, I remember a couple of things.

I had to work on the fields every summer. Picking onions, tomatoes, potatoes… this is what I spent most of the time each summer with, to help my parents with extra money.

Of course, I had a bicycle, and evey summer, my knees and elbows were all bruised. That was part of my summer outfit, I guess 🙂

When not working on the fields, I was reading and studying, even during summer (the library was soon my second home!).

Sometimes, I spent a few days with my grandmothers, too, but when they moved to the next street, this also was out of question.

But later, since I won several competitions in school (math, grammar, crafts, etc.), I was exceptionally lucky, because these meant camps with likeminded kids every summer for a few years! My parents could not afford paying for camps, but this way, my hard work paid off. These camps were the best of those years! I found real friends there, finally. And I have most of my childhood summer memories from these camps.

Playing volleyball. Fishing, then grilling the fish on open fire. Hiking. Crafting. Bonfires, and night-long discussions. Making plans to change the world. And believing we can change the world…

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