My love for the west seemed inherent in me even at the young age of nine – a time when childhood play was ripe with imagination and fantasy. And so it was that an old wooden fence would become my horse, a folded blanket – my saddle, as my childhood friends and I transformed ourselves to a time long ago, fighting crime and taming the wild, wild west.
Summer in the south meant starting early enough to avoid the hottest part of the day. Playing outdoors was our only option until we were called in for lunch. One moment taming the west, and the next, drinking Tang and eating crust-less grilled cheese sandwiches cut into four triangles and spaghettios, with the smell that would linger until supper. If we were lucky, we might also have potato chips that were delivered to our front door in a can. Not one was broken and each was miraculously larger and more perfect than the next.
Playtime in the 60’s meant using our imagination and whatever resources we had available to us. Empty cardboard boxes were a big deal and anyone whose parents were fortunate enough to buy a new refrigerator (back then they came in boxes) could have a box big enough for a fort! Rolly polly circuses, chameleons that we were convinced developed an emotional bond with us, and toads that peed on us every time, these are the things that filled our days when we were children. There was something magical about growing up during a time when we played outside until the streetlights started buzzing and the mosquitoes began to bite. Summers were longer then. It wasn’t long after that I kissed my first boy.
It’s no wonder that my dreams now and then take me there – to a time when life was easy and safe. I’ll always remember those days fondly. I appreciate beyond measure my parents who loved and supported me. My dreams will always take me home, to momma and daddy and to the security and love they gave, unconditionally. Home is the place I can always go – in my dreams