Another chapter has emerged, A Summer Bike Ride. How much simpler the writing is since I determined to write composite memories rather than trying to capture specific ones. Considering that about fifty years have passed since the days of which I write, most specific memories have dimmed anyway. Breaking loose from chronology and my timeline simplies matters immensely too.

This chapter was rewarding to write. I think I managed to capture the essence of the Los Alamos picnic ground in that era along with some insight into my thoughts as a young teen. It was also a good place to plant some description of my bedroom.

“What else can I put in here about my fascination with pine trees?” was a typical question as I wrote. I feel rather like a painter pondering where to put a spot of red to juice up a forest scene. I was able to tie in several mini-memories that wouldn’t rate a chapter of their own and more dialogue than I expected flowed in naturally.

Does it matter that this specific day is basically fiction? Not at all, at least to me. It is totally true to my memory of how things were, if not exactly what happened. I know that this day happened in a similar fashion several times, but don’t remember exact details of any individual one.

If anyone wants to bone up on how memory works, I highly recommend John Kotre’s classic volume, White Gloves: How We Create Ourselves Through Memory. It’s old enough that if you can’t get it at the library, it’s readily available used through Amazon.

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