Monday, September 7, 2009


It was an odd year. We had moved to the Northrop School district, yet, some one thought it would be best for Greg and I to stay at Washington. The house on north Arnold was in the 900 block. Washington was in the two hundred block of south Knight.

It isn't clear to me just when we moved from Oakland Park Road, only that the house wasn't finished and we were living in a converted city-type bus until one night a big storm came up and rocked the bus. Mother was so frightened, we moved into another house which was finished enough to at least set up the beds.

Maybe I stayed because I wanted the same Brownie leader. Maybe it was because I was in a skating group. I made friends easily so I don't think it was because I was shy or backwards. After all, I hadn't hide behind a piano for a long time.

It was the year Eisenhower was on the ballet for president. Our class took a vote the day of the election and I LIKE IKE won! At Christmas, we bought stamps for a penny a piece for the American Lung Association. I have zero recollection of who the teacher was, perhaps she was so good she blended into the back ground.

What I do remember is walking to the 500 block of north Duluth and going into Sandvig's to pick up Jean to walk the rest of the way. They always had a great breakfast and Mrs. Sandvig gave me oranges with powdered sugar. She called me the little weather man; she may have counted the amount of frost on the scarf wrapped around my face.

Actually, it wasn't a scarf at all. It was a pink stocking cap mother had knit for me. It was as long as I was tall and the big tassel at the end brushed the ground. The cap wrapped around my neck twice and was tucked in to keep it in place. It was cold enough to hear the crunch of the snow as one walked.

On very, very cold days, Mr. Wilson would take us to school in his Studebaker pick up. The windows would be frosted from my brother, Sandy, Mr. Wilson, and myself breathing.

We always walked home. A family along the way had a big dog that would push me down. Greg, my brother, stopped that quick and smacked the dog a few times with a hockey stick. The owners were also told to keep their dog kenneled when kids where coming home from school. Certainly I wasn't the only child that dog 'rode'.

As for lunch, rather than eat wax paper wrapped sandwiches, a few of us went out the back door over to Lincoln and ate hot lunch. The plates where white with separations and someone only wanted peaches which slid off the plate unto the floor. He didn't get more peaches but got the rest of the starch and fat for lunch.

In the summer we would string beads which we separated according to size and color and put in egg cartons. Most of it was done at Sharon's house in the back yard in the shade. Judy lived across the street, I never played there after her dad kicked her with his work boot.

The boys in the neighborhood made hockey goals out of chunks of snow in the street. Since the street was gravel, they wore their shoes or boots. When a car came by, often they would have to honk to get them to move, the boys would swear when the car ran over their goals.

One of the things I really liked about living there was all my grand parents were close. Grandpa and Grandma Ranum lived about four blocks away and Grandma Mae and Grandpa Phil were just two blocks away. In the summer I would write my bike to see them, often more than once a day.

Oh, and we still didn't have homework.


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