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every man a king
k. stampfl's rewrite
The heat felt like the flag that my father had put up in the summer of 1936 had been soaked in water then wrapped around our bodies. Covering everything on your body so that it was hard to do anything but breathe. And even doing that was a challenge on that fateful night of July 19th.
The storm was already brewing on the lake when Steffy came out with the ham sandwiches and potato salad. It hung like a deadly hammer over the lake. Ready to slam it's deadly force into their island. Maybe it would at least break the oppressive heat wave Maine was having.
Billy, Steffy and I sat on the porch on lawn chairs arranged around a plastic lawn table. It was too hot to be in the house anyway. Nobody really ate much of their food. They seemed to shift their food to new corners of the plate. The steel bucket of Pepsi is what they most desired. Gulping it down like their lives depended on it.
It seemed as if the only thing worth doing on that sticky mess of a day was swimming in the cool ( boiling hot) lake. Even that hadn't proved worthwhile. As with everything else on the island it was hot. Warmed by the sun that had beat upon it all day, relentlessly. The only cool part in the lake, or almost cool, was the deep bottom in the very center of the lake. Not the shallows which 5-year old Billy was more accustomed to.
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