Earlier this week, my suburban neighborhood was buzzing with activity, as reports of a sighting of the ice cream truck spread like wildfire from house to house. Summer may not officially start for another month, but the arrival of the ice cream truck was a sign that summer was close.
There were a few false alarms, but eventually, they heard the sound of sugar coming down the street. The parents were all nearby and could hear and see the truck, but the kids wanted to ensure everything was ready. They franticly waved and screamed with joy, as the ice cream truck parked across the street and the driver prepared for his loyal customers. Like the screaming fans who greeted the Beatles at New York's JFK Airport in 1964 when they first arrived in America, the kids were wild with enthusiasm.
They waited near the curb, looking up and down the street for the ice cream truck. They patiently paced back and forth and exhibited tremendous discipline, as they were unusually quiet. The kids quickly learned last year that they will hear the ice cream truck coming, before they see it.
The "menu" likely didn't change much from last year, but the kids stared in amazement at all of the options. After a discussion over the pros and cons of numerous selections, the final decisions were made. They thanked the ice cream man and asked when he would be back. As we sat down to eat our newly delivered treats, I attempted to interview the kids about why the ice cream truck meant so much to them. It was simple: ice cream with gumballs, delivered to their house, in a truck that played music. The answer was so clear, it was silly of me to ask. Summer arrived this week and the smiles, laughter and ice cream were the proof.
A lifelong resident of Minnesota, Michael Brodkorb is an experienced communications, social media, public affairs & research consultant and is an observer of all things political. He also blogs at politics.mn. He lives in Eagan with his family.