Friday, February 18, 2011

The Neighborhood

My memories of the neighborhood are all jumbled up.  I have no idea of the time frames of these events or everyday occurrences.  Before we got a fence put in, I recall telling all the kids, even older kids than me, to stay out of my yard.  I was pretty bossy about it, as I recall. 

I was a tomboy through and through.  I climbed trees, wore blue jeans, and dug in the dirt a lot.  Mother says she would have to sneak my jeans to the laundry as I would wear them every day.  I hated wearing shorts and sandals and being prissy.  To this day, I love a pair of blue jeans and a tee shirt.  I am all about comfort.

There was a kid that lived behind us named Brent.  He and my brother Timmy and I would play "Big Valley" like the TV show.  He was always Victoria.  Go figure.  Timmy and I had the run of the backyard and we had a swingset and Brent had a swingset so we ran between the yards playing "Big Valley" on the swingsets.  Not sure why we did that but I remember the two swingsets being a part of our play.  One day, Brent got a brand new puppy.  We ran to his patio door to see the puppy.  I picked it up to carry down to our patio to show Moma.  The puppy had diarrhea down my shin on the journey.  Pretty sure I cried all the way home after dropping the puppy.  That is a yucky memory.

Across the street from us lived an elderly couple named Freeman.  They had no children so they adopted all the neighborhood kids.  They passed out popcorn and would have a backyard party at their house complete with watermelon, two of my favorites.  There is at least one picture they took of all us kids in their backyard.  In the 1960's that was a lot of kids!  Must have been 20 or more!

Down the street from us lived the Jacksons.  Cathy was my age, Georgann was right between Timmy and me, and George was Timmy's age.  I became fast buddies with Georgann, not Cathy.  Fine with me.  She was good friends with their next door neighbor, Jodi.  Jodi was older and cool.  She knew all the latest stuff, fashionwise, I am sure.  Georgann and I loved going to each other's houses for lunch.  I preferred her house because there would be fruit with sandwiches and chips.  I can't remember why that was better than home, but to me, it was.  We spent the night at each other's houses too.  I remember building a tent in her bedroom and playing records on her record player.  We mostly listened to Glen Campbell.  We both had crushes on him.

One year I got a bicycle for Christmas.  Daddy put the handlebars on backwards.  There is a picture of that somewhere.  Anyway, I remember riding my bike all over the neighborhood, literally.  I did two things after school, read and ride my bike.  I think riding my bike was how I stayed so slim.  It was great exercise.  Now I read all the time, which does not help you stay slim.

As I got older, I wanted a 10-speed.  If I remember it right, Daddy offered to get me one if I would earn half the money.  I think that was how I got my 10-speed.  I earned half of the cost myself.  Then I flew on my 10-speed all over the neighborhood every day.

Timmy and I rode our bikes to school and we sometimes walked to school.  I always felt responsible for him.  Good times!

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