What better place to be if you are avoiding the treadmill than in here talking to you all?

I was doing just a little blog walking already…saving the most reading for after I do my duty on the treadmill, and came across some nostalgia comments. I added my own and of course, as often happens with that sort of remark or reading that sort of remark, the memories linger and you would like to talk more about it.

She was reminded of when she babysat for her siblings. They would just head off to the park among other things, and though the little ones were very young..and she not that much older…they were safe. They headed out with the usual parental admonitions and were gone till when-ever…came home and that was that. No harm done. Others mentioned their own experiences in the same manner.

For my part, I threw in that from the age of 10 upward, I was usually to be found somewhere about 11AM on a Saturday morning up at a girlfriend’s house where we would grab a sandwich and head on off up the street and then detour onto a dirt road what wound alongside a creek. We scuffled along, talking and laughing. An occasional foray down to the creeks edge and back up to the dirt road where we walked till we got to the outskirts of the next town, three and a half miles away. Having achieved that, we wrangled on whether or not we would go back the same way we came OR would we walk down the 4 lane highway back to town? Usually we walked down the highway. We unfailingly made it home, unmolested, unremarked. That is not to say that in retrospect that I don’t know there were people abroad that we needed to be away from. I do. But that likelihood then was much dimmer than it is now.

After having made it home, we just played quietly or did our chores and even homework at our separate homes and that evening, we’d walk all the way down to the other end of town and go roller skating. AND walk allllllll the way back home again at 10PM. No problems, no concerns. Same with double features at the movies. Evening = no problems. Now this was a small town…I doubt my Dad would have permitted much of this otherwise. But nonetheless, you were far safer with ordinary precautions then than now. We knew the usual admonitions..don’t get in a car with a stranger and so on. I don’t recall they used to be as bold and desperate as they are now, these predators, where they forcefully pick up a child and abduct them. But too, drugs weren’t prevalent and ever present either.

Anyway, it was always a halcyon time it seemed, or close enough, with the kindly veil of time between then and now. To go to the playground over the weekend where there were literally blankets of white, yellow and purple violets on the lesser played-on areas was heavenly. I used to pick thick bouquets in Springtime and bring them home to Dad. I love violets to this day, and when I see them appear, I am 9 years old in my yellow dress again, bent over picking violets. I’d lay them on the grass and go over to the swings before I went home with those pale treasures, those violets, and try my hardest to see if this time I could swing clear over the top of the rail!!!!!!!!!! I never could but I tried hard. I had to go on the tallest sliding board too. It had 2 humps on the slide..not one! WOW! It was a little worrisome for me climbing to the top to slide down but I didn’t let anyone know I was a little scared. I’s choose it just to get over being scared!

There was a hill, called Bowman’s Hill right adjacent to the playground and some of us kids would climb that hill (gasp, wheeze!! it was steep!!!) and go all the way over the top to another township-like place. We’d walk around and look at the houses and then slither back down the Hill to the playground hoping not to be caught by any adults or we’d be told on! That was a no-no.

Oh, and don’t play hooky either. You get caught every time by the neighbors. They tell the Principal and the Principal tells your parents and you get a whoopin’. I used to walk home for lunch and sometimes get caught up in the soap operas and not want to go back. That got cured!!! Old Mrs. Conti across the street told on me!!!

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