Saturday, September 12, 2009


Her name was Doris Peterson, she was one of the fifth grade teachers at Knox. She was a stern looking woman with metal frame glasses. She wore drab colored clothing and granny shoes. If she wore make up you wouldn't have known it. The other fifth grade teacher was dressed in the latest fashion, wore high heel shoes, and bright red lipstick. I wanted her for a teacher but got the other.

A few days of school passed when I realized this teacher was fair, explained lessons well, and admitted she could not sing~~we would learn songs by listening to records. She gave me the impression that going to school was as important was work was to adults. She had my respect.

Betty and I continued to be good friends. Scouts continued, this time at our house with mother as the leader. We went to a farm and scouted for sheep skulls, which we painted green and had our initials on it. I would go to camp at Itasca State Park for the second year. This time I wouldn't have a bossy bunk mate who drew a line down the center of the room and made me get permission to go out of the room. I would bunk with someone nicer and watch a bat tangle in her hair. I would also get in trouble for putting wood ticks in the counselors soap dish. I swam well enough to go beyond the ropes and get away from the deer flies that bit your head near the shore.

We would go on a long vacation that winter and when we got back, Mrs. Peterson allowed me to share the trip using the big state map on the wall. It was interesting to me to see where we had been on a map with mountains. The studying Greg and I were supposed to do never happened, I don't remember the consequence.

There was an 'old time' parade of some sort. It couldn't have been Minnesota State hood because that was in 1858. None of the numbers match up to a specific year, such as, Diamond Jubilee or other. Several of us dressed up in period clothing and rode in a wagon in a parade. I wore a black skirt, a white blouse, and a black bonnet with ruffles. Everyone should be in at least one parade, don't you think?

A friend who lives in a small town near Fargo was recently getting her grand children ready for a parade. I suggest, as mentioned previously, everyone should be in at least one parade. She wrote back and said but every year?

Betty and I put on her sister's skirts and made hoops out of thin wooden strips tied together with chalk line. We took the big lamp shades off the lamps and went about the neighborhood singing we are the ladies of lamp shade land to the tune of a song from The Wizard of Oz.

In late summer, Betty's cousin would steal apples and we would hide the stash in a concrete culvert. Wayne got caught at Spray's house. They told us all we could have an many apples as we wanted but we needed to come to the door and ask. Although Betty and I did not take the apples, we were still part of the club that stored them. Guilty.

Betty's mother and her friend had a lefse making business in the basement of the friend's house. They had a big wooden stove they baked it on. It was packaged 3 pieces to a parcel. Pearl always had a few pieces that couldn't be sold, it was a big treat after school.

There was a family in our neighborhood that sang and played instruments in church. The boy's name was Ben. It would be the first time I heard my voice on a recorder and did not recognize it.

Spring was wet and muddy. The influence of Ben's family, the Good Cheer Club, and Marjorie's singing family found me wanting to go to the Billy Graham "show" at the auditorium at Lincoln High School. Mother was against it. So much so that she did not allow me to put on a clean dress.

When we went to school, we had an area that was being developed into a road, it was not uncommon to get mud on your clothes, in this case, the squaw dresses which where popular at that time. I had two, one bright yellow and the other turquoise.

Despite mother's wishes, I went anyway. We sat in the balcony in the front row. It was my first experience with Bible thumping, old time religion. I left thinking that all that fire and brimstone was not God's love. I wouldn't hear that sort of sermon again until my grandmother died.

Mike Fox, his teary eyed sister, Margret, and I played school in their basement. It was all set up with a row of desks and a chalk board. We took turns being the teacher. Once in a while other kids would come. It was a great thing to do in the winter.

I liked the neighborhood. I liked to watch Iner stand on the back porch and cuss the wind and the rain. His wife, a nurse, was the first person I ever saw with pierced ears.

I was looking forward to six grade at Knox hopeful I would get another great teacher.

Happy 39th birthday, Bud!


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