by Julia (Robinson) Mitchell-Hoffman
When I was a child, I spent many hours playing at Deni Playground. I can remember being very young when my sisters would take my brother and I there. We would play in the sand box on the top level of the playground and also on the swings that had safety guards on them. My brother would climb the monkey bars and act like a monkey. As we got a bit older my sisters would take us down to the big kids playground where there were swings and a slide. My brother loved to be pushed on the swing and like to swing so high. My sisters loved climbing the rocks. My brother and I wanted to climb the rocks but our sisters would say no. There was no stopping my brother once he decided he was going to climb them. Till this day I still laugh when I think of how he would harass both of my sisters by climbing them and running along the rocks. One day he even threatened to make himself fall and tell my mom they were not watching him!!
As I got older the field across the street became more of an attraction to us girls as we would watch the boys play sports. We also loved watching them play basketball back at the playground. It was a safe place to play and always was a fun place. For the most part the kids all got along. There were occasional arguments but they did not result in much. It is funny sometimes how you forget these things of your childhood and when someone dies you are reminded of those places were you spent time enjoying childhood friends.
The field across the street from the playground was also a place where carnivals were held. I can remember playing ski-ball and so many awesome games, riding the amusements, eating cotton candy and walking hand in hand with my first boyfriend. Up the street from the playground was St Joaquim’s where we would go to Strawberry Festivals and have a great time, always returning back to the playground.
It is amazing to remember these times in a good light. May each of us remember to be gentle with each other and with our own selves, striving to make a difference in this world.