Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Year's Gone By

My curfew was the street lights. My Mother didn't call my cell, she just yelled our name and we came in. My friends and I didn't text, we just knew what time to meet on the front steps. I played outside with friends, not online. If I didn't eat what my Mom made, then I didn't eat. Hand sanitizer didn't exist, but you COULD get your mouth washed out with soap if you said a bad word. Never drink out of a hose because it will make you really sick. Never pluck an icicle hanging from a tree and suck on it. Never ever suck a snowball stuck to your woolen mittens that gramma made. You're sure to get hives on your tongue.

Remember sliding down " High Street" on your rusty old sled (or better yet on an old piece of cardboard) - when you had to do the old body " tip and twist" as you flew like the wind own the middle of the road. And then remember the long, torturous haul back up the hill for yet one more ride?

Remember those crisp, clear, fall days when you climbed that enormous oak tree and then jumped from the highest limb you could reach to the raked leaves piled high beneath? No leaf blowers then so we had to remember to move the rake out of the way before jumping so it wouldn't crack us in the head. And later, remember the delicious smell and sweet aroma of those same leaves burning in the crisp fall air.

Kick ball and dodge ball were not banned or considered "dangerous". Nor was wiffle ball or running bases that was played on the street. We had to be quick to run to the side of the road for the few passing cars that interrupted our game. The telephone pole was first base, the manhole cover, second, and the big oak, third.

Remember jump rope, double dutch and hopscotch? Will today's kids ever marvel at the snap of crisp white sheets flapping in the breeze on the backyard clothes? Clothes pins will be unknown. The sound of a "choo choo" chugging along the track is no more. What will become of the favorite childhood book "The Little Engine that Could?" The Good humor bells no longer call us from our houses on the gentle summer evenings after supper. The old guy driving the beat up truck with the clanging bell annoucing his slow drive through local streets carrying fresh fruits and vegetables for our tables is gone forever.

The familiar sounds of milk bottles clanging as the morning milk was delivered to our doorsteps. The race to be first to pour off the thick sweet cream that formed on top. The milkman's arrival was the signal to pull ourselves out of our warm beds and stand shivering over the hot air vent in the floor as we dressed quickly to keep warm. Then we could probably hear the thud of the newspaper thrown by the neighborhood kid from his bicycle as he fled by on his daily morning deliveries. He needed to hurry so he could catch that on-going sandlot ball game before the school bell rang.

And whatever happened to seesaws at playgrounds, or those wonderful little tin wind up toys? Will we ever again see the awful pink, plastic hair rollers hidden under a kerchief at a drive in movie? In fact, where are the drive-in movies?

What memories! The litany goes on and on and I can't help but wonder what today's youngsters will mourn in the next 50 years. I hope they too will have special memories to embrace .

1 Comments:

Blogger dors4 said...

Have you seen the get up of a child on roller skates these day? Wrist pads, knee pads, elbow pads and helmets. No wonder you never see a kid out playing anymore. As for safety, if I remember correctly our Chevy station wagon didn't even have seat belts. But how could you belt 8 kids in anyway!

July 8, 2011 at 10:16 AM  

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