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 The Summer Spot

by Ruthlyn Johnson

It was the last day of school and Tommy ran out of the school building with a big smile on his face. He raced towards his home but just before he got there he ran into the yard of his next door neighbour and best friend.

“Jimmy, can you believe it?  It is summer again!”

“Hey Tommy, I have been dying for you to come home.  It is also the last day of school for me and I can’t wait for us to start enjoying the summer holidays!”

“I can’t wait for us to go down to Cooling Spring to catch fish.  Can you imagine how they have grown since last summer?”

“Mm,” said Tommy rubbing his belly. “Lots of fish to catch and eat!”

“O.K., said Jimmy, “Meet you at your gate in the morning, 8:00 o’clock sharp!”


Tommy then raced over to his house went under the cellar and got out his fishing line and prepared it for his morning’s trip. Tommy was an energetic 12 year-old. His best friend Jimmy, was the same age and they spent every summer since they were five years old catching fish, swimming and playing in Cooling Spring, a large pond in their farming community.  Their fathers were farmers who had property close to the pond and supervised them while they romped the summer away.

Morning came and both boys could be seen travelling the path to Cooling Spring behind their fathers.  They played and idled while on their way.  At times their Dads had to stop and wait for them to catch up.

“You boys are slowing us down!” said Tommy’s father.

Soon they were at the farm and while their Dads got to work the boys ran excitedly ahead and then raced each other out to the opening where Cooling Spring was located.

There was a loud gasp from both boys when they reached the clearing.

Jimmy yelled, “What happened to the pond? Where is the beautiful water with the fishes?”

They threw down their fishing rods and stood there staring at the water.  Where there used to be clear, shining water with fishes and other birds and insects enjoying the water, there was brown, muddy, thick water with a lot of water lilies growing on top and plastic bottles and other forms of garbage floating around as well.  They could barely see the water below as it was also overgrown with weeds and it was obvious that it would be difficult for any form of life to survive in this polluted grave.

The boys were very disappointed and ran to their fathers to ask them what happened.  They were told that the new coffee farm nearby was the problem as the new farmer used fertilizers and pesticides on his crops and when it rained these chemicals were washed down into the pond.  The farmer also washed his spray pan in the pond sometimes.  Along with that, the labourers on the farm throw their garbage in the pond.  With all these bad things taking place the pond became polluted after a while.

 Jimmy was very concerned, “But Dad this cannot be allowed to happen.  We have to do something about it.  This is our playground and it is the only little place that we can play each summer.  We enjoy coming to Cooling Spring.” 

“Why would anyone destroy this?” wailed Tommy.

“Well we could set up a meeting with the farmer and see what we could work out with him, said Tommy’s father.

“Please Dad, please,” cried Tommy.

“O.K.” said Tommy’s Dad, “I will get to it right now.” 

He walked off through the bushes towards the coffee farm.

“In the meantime,” said Jimmy’s Dad, “Let’s see if we can start cleaning up this pond.”

“That is a good idea Dad,” said Jimmy.

Jimmy’s dad immediately reached down into the water and started to drag the boxes and plastic bottles from its surface.  Jimmy and Tommy walked closer to the water’s edge and began picking up bottles as well. 





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