I remember when…..or even – Do you remember when….. It’s a common phrase we all use often, especially when we get together with our family or old friends. Lately I have been doing a lot of I remember when’s. Don’t know why – no reason. My mind just jumps back to earlier times…fun times…different relationships…friends…family affairs.
We all do it. It’s a natural process of getting older, and as we get older we sometimes tend to forget the finer details of the past and our minds have to be jump-started and our memories jogged with reminisces from earlier times.
I was remembering when we used to walk or ride our bikes to town when we were younger, but I couldn’t remember how many blocks that was or even the names of the streets. I called my sister, Debbie, and she googled it and came up with the names I was missing and we decided it was only about five blocks. I googled how long city blocks were and came up with an average of 16 – 17 blocks per mile. That’s a lot of blocks and I would think there were less blocks in a mile. So…I guess it wasn’t as far as I thought it was. Of course we probably made it longer than was necessary. There was plenty to look at, friends houses to stop by, and lots of nooks and crannies to explore along the way.
The length isn’t important though. What matters is that we did it. We walked to the picture show on Saturdays and there was usually a double feature. When that was over we would sometimes sit through it all over again.
We would walk down to the news stand and buy candy. Does anyone remember corn suckers? It was hard candy on a stick and there was a coin hidden inside the candy. The coin wasn’t wrapped in cellophane – just encased in the candy. They probably cost a dime at the most. Sometimes there was a quarter hidden inside, but most likely it was a penny! Think of the lawsuits surrounding that candy today if it was still being manufactured!
We would walk to the library and spend hours browsing through the shelves of books with our friends. We would sit and read or look through the picture viewers. Remember those? You could look through the lens and see pictures in 3-D. I have an old one of those and wonder now why we were so thrilled to get our turn at using one. Compared to what is out there today, they are nothing except nostalgic.
I wonder sometimes what my mother was doing when we were all out of her hair for hours on Saturday afternoons. As long as she knew where we were and we returned home before dark there was no problem. She was probably in heaven because there were five of us and we were usually under her feet – at least I was! I’ve been told I was very clingy!
My mother worked night duty at the local hospital as an RN and my dad worked normal daytime hours at the post office in those days. It worked out fine for them as far as schedules go. Mother went to work at 11pm til 7am. She left after we went to bed at night and was home in time to get us off to school in the mornings, plus my dad was home at night so we weren’t alone in the house.
Summer vacations from school must have been a nightmare for my mother though. I remember her sleeping during the day closed up in my brothers room because it was the farthest away from all the noise. The window unit would be on drowning out any other noises there may be and if you opened the door you could almost feel the icicles start to form. She would be in the bed with the covers piled high and dead to the world. I don’t know how she stood it being so cold in there! I’m sure she didn’t get as much rest as should have though. We were in there constantly – asking questions, searching for a lost item, just bothering her in general. Debbie, woke her one day to ask her where the library card was. Her answer – “There it is walking out the door!” It was like a game with us when it got started. We would ask a question just to hear what she would say, giggling at her answers. We always said she could sleep through a tornado! Sometimes it was very frustration though because we thought the world revolved around us and her sleep did not matter. We needed answers and we needed them pronto! She needed sleep to function but didn’t get much of that with us around.
Do you have a story to share that stands out in your childhood – some casual remembrance of days long gone? I guess those were the ‘good ole days!’