Summer Lottery

Summer was almost over, and they all knew it even though they wouldn’t talk about it. They left their homes early that Sunday, the last Sunday of summer, and walked towards the hill where they had gone so many times before that same summer, but this time was special. The empty streets, the same streets they had walked by many times, looked different in the empty early morning, and as they passed the stores and houses they knew well, they wanted to talk about the summer ending, but no one did.

It had been a summer of endless days, one longer than the other, and sometimes they all had thought it was a summer that would never end. Their routine had become so pleasantly repetitive that they all knew when or where the others would be without having to ask each other. So many places, so many streets, so many hills have become their second homes, and now they were walking by them, as if it was the last time.

The sun fell on their shoulders stronger, as they went up the hill, and they wished the sun stayed on them for as long as it could, because the sun was heavy, but it was also familiar, and familiar that summer was good. They walked up hill, and smiled at each other, because they had learned to communicate with each other, without words, as guys do when they walk up hills and there are no words to say goodbye.

They finally reached the top, and in unison sat in a circle, as they had done hundreds of times that summer. One of them looked around, returned the other’s smiles, and took it out of his bag. It was the same wooden lottery game they had used all summer, the game that had bonded them together, and now they were going to play it for the last time. The five friends saw the lottery game, and thought of how special that summer had been.

The day after would be Monday, and they would all go back to different schools, some would move away, and then they all realized no summer would ever be like the one that was ending. But there was time for one more game of lottery, and to be with their best friends for a little while, so one of them made the lottery turn, and they all wished the wooden piece never stopped turning.


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