By: Ray Bradbury
The story starts off at night when everyone is asleep, describing how the air was Summery. Douglas Spalding, a 12-year-old boy, is introduced. He lives in a 3-story cupola. One night each week he was allowed to go to his grandparents cupola and wake the town. He yells out to the town, to wake everyone up. Then it is mentioned that it is 1928.
That morning he broke a spider web with his face, so he knew that day would be different. His father and little brother Tom went to go pick grapes and berrys out of the forest. As they were walking Tom started talking about all of the statistics of everything in the past year two years, and his whole life. Doug kept feeling as though something was near him and was bout to jump to him as Tom talked. After Tom asking Doug a question and Doug surprisingly agreeing, Tom jumped on him and started to wrestle him and roll around. They stopped for a moment and Doug realized that that was what his feeling was. He thought "I am alive" as if her were realizing it for the first time. They wrestle a little more and realized his father and Tom planned it all. Doug started to feel the way his father did and lead the way back home.
Doug is by his grandfathers house and his grandfather is going to give the children 10 cents per barrel of Dandelions they pick. They are going to make Dandelion Wine. They make this wine in the summer and now that Doug realized he is alive he wants to taste summer. This is a family tradition and Doug eagerly awaits it.
Doug is lost looking for Dandelions and then he sees a path that is nature and civilization, he follows the path and hears boys running yelling "Doug come on" and he said "I'm alive, but what is the use they are more alive then me, How Come" He knew the answer starring at his feet.
Doug wants a pair of shoes but he only gets a new pair every second summer. Doug feels sorry for boys in California, that's one reason for getting new shoes. He said that they never get to experience winter coming off their feet. The name of the store he wants to but them from is "The Cream-Sponge Para Litefoot" their motto was "Find friends, ditch enemies." "Does the world run too fast? Want to catch up? Want to be alert, Stay alert? Litefoot then! Litefoot!" Doug gave a proposal to the storekeeper telling him that he would work for him doing him a dozen favors and he would do them so fast in his new sneakers, according to the store motto. Mr. Sanderson, the storekeeper agrees to pay the dollar Doug needs to pay for the sneakers and ask him to work for him in five years.
Doug made a list and divided it into two halves. They were: 1. Rites and Ceremonies. Under the this was everything they do the same every summer. The other half was: 2. Discoveries and Realizations. Under this title was what they learned new that summer from what they did the summer before. Doug decides to keep doing this and Doug agrees.
Doug while speaking of rituals talks about his family rituals. On the third day of the summer all his family sits out on the porch, all the women talking, all the men smoking and talking, and the children playing. As the night ends the children fall asleep on the porch while the men are talking about what the future holds for the children.
Doug makes a request to Leo Auffmann, The town machinist. The request to make the town a Happiness Machine for the children. But Leo says every machine sooner or later makes people cry. Leo thinks about it and takes it as a challenge and says, "I will make that machine." Leo Auffmann is a very determined man. The shocks of life, Leo says, are being born, growing up, growing up, and dying. Leo has a large family he has six children. He says he wants this machine to help boys change from peach fuzz to briar bramble, and girls from toadstool to nectarine. In other words, to grow up nicely.
Doug wonders off and does not return home at his normal time and his mother...