I wish, for you, summer nights filled with endless opportunity. For nights that smell of limes, and fire, and lingering perspiration. For nights of uncombed hair, sunburned skin, and bare toes. Because, these nights are not as fleeting as you imagine, but far too rare to take for granted.
I hope you know these nights. Nights when, years later, you look back and say, “that was a great night.” Nights of sitting on the hood of a Chevy Caprice listening to mix tapes from the cassette player, or spilling out onto the streets of the South End after the boys have all gone home, or dancing on a fountain in the middle of a blackout, or standing on the dock watching the northern lights in the sky. These are the nights that will define your youth, your fire. The nights that will define you.
There’s an intangible on nights like this. A feeling in the air that makes it electric. A moment that makes you unlimited, with no boundaries or barriers to place in your way. These are the moments to dream big, to be reckless, to be fearless. And I hope you take these opportunities when they come your way. Be in the moment, see the magic around you.
Learn how to recognize these moments, to see them for what they are. Don’t look back upon these times with regret, embrace these opportunities and be brave. Because, you want to say, somewhere down the road, I danced on the streets to Brown Eyed Girl, I skinny dipped in the ocean, I climbed that tree. And, I didn’t care how they looked at me or what they said, because I did it. I lived big for that brief moment.
And if you live life right, these moments aren’t always for youth, they’re not only to look back on with fondness, they’re around you all the time. Learn to recognize the power in an evening. The beauty of string lights in the yard and a pitcher of margaritas. The true magic of a rainbow after a storm. The magnitude of a perfect summer night. Name it, give it power and strength. So that you can usher others into your world without limits.