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Remember When

  • In Boy Scouts, you learn about snipes on your own

    My best buddy’s mama, Mrs. Ellie Pipkins, was a den mother and leader of  our neighborhood Cub Scout Pack.

    Cub Scouts get to do some stuff, but nothing like the older Boy Scouts of America.

    Most us were already experienced campers, but Cubs couldn’t go camping overnight. We could have back yard cook-outs and sharpen our knot-tying skills, but that was about it.

    I guess you could say, that made us Boy Scouts in training.

    First Baptist Church sponsored Boy Scout Troop 70 and a bunch of my Sunday School friends were already members.

  • Oh well, it’s better crate than never

     

    Oh well, it’s better crate than never

    During our recent visit to Maryland, we made regular stop by the Amish open air market between La Plata and Lexington Park. 

    I like that place. The vegetables aren’t in yet, but flower baskets and fresh, cut flowers are in abundance.

  • An apple pie never goes out of style

    It had been as hot as a firecracker all week.

    Truck convoys loaded with soldiers were a common sight, with maneuvers in full swing.

    The Red and Blue armies invaded Lancaster from opposite directions. Campsites were set up wherever thee was a hint of a shade tree.

    The fellas were making the best of it, too, roaming around from one group of GI’s to another.

  • My robe smells like old curtains

    The economy was good. All the mills were running three shifts full tilt, with jobs available to those who showed interest in becoming lint heads.

    As a soon-to-be 1951 graduate of Lancaster High School, I was about to achieve a milestone in a textile town; I was about to get my high school diploma.

    It’s what I had been working hard for and was the one highlight for my years of schooling.

    It was a good time; the 1950’s were just getting off the ground and great things were ahead, or so we thought.

    But last summer, war started in far off Korea.

  • I still believe in postal carriers

    I’ve always wondered if Benjamin Franklin got the idea for the postal service after his kite got hit by that lightning bolt.

    Whatever the case, it was a good one.

    Plenty of us regularly e-mail our friends.

    But I wonder, too, how much e-mail has impacted the postal service. If we weren’t communicating via e-mail, we might be sending more post cards.

    I’m old enough to remember penny post cards, 3-cent stamps and those special six-centers for air mail delivery.

    Along Chesterfield Avenue, the mailman came by twice each day.

  • I'm not wild about boats

    I never thought the day would come when a boat (not made from a refrigerator box) would be parked in my backyard.

    Don’t worry; it’s not mine; I don’t have any use for a fishing boat.

    I’ve always been a creek-bank fisherman.

    I don’t swim and certainly don’t walk on water.

    When I just about drowned at the old Lancaster Pool on Gay Street many years ago, that cured any fascination I had with water.

  • Don't pass on good times around dinner table

    These days, you just don’t know what to believe. I’ve seen plenty on television and picture show screens to make me skeptical.

    But there is one thing I do believe in; talking tables.

    Now that I have your attention, let me explain.

    This isn’t your typical flat piece of furniture suspended on four legs. And it isn’t an end table, card table, nor coffee table and the like.

    It’s the family dinner table.

  • I'm too sleepy to write anything

    These days, it doesn’t take very much to put me in the mood to count sheep.

    The labels on a couple of my prescriptions tell me it’s not smart to operate farm machinery since these medications  “may induce drowsiness.”

    Guess what? That ain’t a big deal to me anymore.

    At this stage of my life, I make it a point to stay away from hay combines or anything with John Deere written on the side of it.

    In fact, I don’t have any intentions of messing with a garden hoe, much less a merry tiller.

  • Mama's fed up with Blue Mondays

    I guess it was a Monday when the lady of the cave decided it was time to wash out the family hides.

    Years ago, it was called “Blue Monday,” not because washing clothes without a washing machine was depressing, but because of a bluing agent used in the rising water.

    Blue Monday still lingers in some households, but the advent of modern washers and dryers has made every day a potential wash day.

    Well, it wasn’t always that way.

    When I was a small boy, Mama didn’t have a washing machine, not even the old wringer kind.

  • 'Indiana' will find treasure out back

    I’m a big Indiana Jones fan. Old “Indy” is always running across some forgotten treasure that’s long been abandoned.

    I recall when I did the same thing.

    Some men were stringing barbed wire fence along a piece of bottom land next to the creek.

    Mama had a lunch for them and I was left alone to wander (and wonder). “Keep out of trouble,” she said.

    Now this briarpatch I was about to explore had some interesting characteristics.