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Remember When

  • I already had snipe hunting down pat

    – Editor’s note: W.B. Evans is taking a well-deserved birthday break this week. This column originally appeared in the Feb.11, 2007, edition of The Lancaster News. We are reprinting it at the request of our readers.

     

    We just celebrated National Boy Scout Week. 

    I’m pretty sure it always comes during the first week of February. 

    I know for sure that it did back in 1945. My birthday is Feb. 9 and that year, Scout Week had started a few days earlier. 

  • Mama is the snake expert in our family

    With its two-story wooden frame houses and large wrap-around porches, Chesterfield Avenue was pretty much like every other neighborhood around the Lancaster city limits.
    On muggy nights, neighbors walked about to enjoy the slightly cool summers breezes, which rarely blew.
    Aglow with the flicker of a about a half dozen citronella candles, our side porch became a gathering place. It’s hard to rock and carry on a decent conversation when swatting at “skeeters.”

  • Make sure you have the right wrench

    It’s never wise to start a project without having the right tools.

    I had accumulated enough cardboard, 2-by-4s, 10-penny nails and two metal rods for axles. 

    I removed the four wheels from my old Radio Flyer wagon and spread out my new “race car” parts on the dirt floor of the old plunder house. 

    In my estimation, it would only be a matter of getting this marvel up and running.

    Suddenly, Mr. Edison’s light bulb gleamed real bright above my head.

  • Me and Tiger go "King Rat" hunting

    Sometimes, it is best to avoid discussing certain subjects, however this isn’t one of those times.
    Let’s be honest here, folks never have (and never will) want to discuss rats. It’s not nice to talk about them in refined company.
    Seriously, people will give you a funny look when you mention wharf rats.
    Growing up, we called ’em “wolf rats” cause they were big, mean and usually ran in packs.
    Old homes have always been surrounded by plunder houses, garages, cow barns, buggy sheds and chicken coops.

  • Upcoming birthday a time of reflection

    Bless Pete, time sure does fly. In a few more weeks, I’ll reach another milestone in my life.

    I will be another year older, but I seriously doubt if I will be any wiser than I was at this time in 2010.

    It’s true that so far in my journey, I’ve seen a lot, enjoyed a bunch and most likely, missed a heap.

    I’ve been blessed to tell a few stories about this trip with you.

  • We have to keep pulling together

    According to this week’s national news, the unemployment rate dropped to 9.4 percent last month, which is the lowest rate is some time.
    Yes, it’s true that a few have managed to find jobs, but others have given up the search.
    For some reason, the government doesn’t count people as being out of work when they stop looking.
    For those of us in our 70s, this is the second go-round for this “times are tough” stuff.

  • Next year, things will get better

    Some folks were saying that 1944 was gonna bring changes. For me, those changes got an early start.
    Dec. 25 had come and gone, but Mama decided to take down  the Christmas decorations before the old year ended.
    Now, this was as big deal at our house. We usually kept the tree up until New Year’s Day had passed.
    To be honest, the living room Christmas cedar had seen better days and was shedding all over the hardwood floor.
    When I carried it through the front door that Friday afternoon, more dried needles fell all over the front porch.

  • Never make promises before daylight

     

       

    I was so awake, lying beneath all those double blankets and quilts on the bed in my unheated bedroom. 

    The house was dark and my flannel pajamas had kept me toasty warm during one of winter’s coldest nights 

  • Boredom results in crash landing

    Well, winter is almost here. Now, I like Christmas, but I sure dread all of this cold, nasty weather.
    Days like this aren’t meant for a growing boy. I was made for clear warm days, when I can be outside playing, and out of Mama’s way.
    You know, this dreary weather isn’t lessening my chores at all.
    In fact, Mama, because she’s keeping a closer eye on me, is staying on top of stuff.

  • Time to pull up the covers

    Well sir, sometimes, one has to eat his own words, or at the least take a bite out of ’em.
    That’s what I’ve been doing this week, thanks to the plunging thermometer.
    Now, I gotta admit this “Remember when” stuff is a rehash of days long gone by.
    You remember? We were young. Life wasn't so complicated and folks didn’t jump off the deep end over things of little or no consequence.
    Bless Pete, when the weather got cold, I slipped on flannel pajamas and crawled down beneath that double wool blanket to stay warm.