3/16/2010

When I was a kid...

Talking to my best friend today gave me a good idea for a subject to blog about. We were talking and laughing about our childhood memories of being at our grandparent's houses.

I told her my grandparents, who lived in Florida, had no air conditioning (or at least if they had it they never ran it) and we always visited in the summer. It was stifling! Trying to sleep in that heat was nearly impossible, but Grandma would put a big box fan in the room with us which blew hot air around. The covers were wet with sweat and we slept very little during our stay.

Also, they had no toys or kid games at their house and their yard was full of sand spurs. Sometimes the ice cream truck would come down their street, and if we were able to convince mom to let us raid her coinage fast enough before it got away, we usually had to suffer several vicious wounds to get to the curb and back with our frozen treat which would melt quickly in the sun's rays as we picked the spiny spurs from our soft city soles.

They only got about 2 channels on their TV and, since Grandpa was a Baptist preacher, we usually got a lecture if we tried to watch TV anyway.

Their water was really, really stinky sulphur water that smelled strongly of rotten eggs. I remember thinking that bath wasn't really getting me clean since the water was so stinky.

They had weird food we had never seen or tasted before like sardines and they drank powdered milk.

We all shared the one bathroom and the toilet couldn't flush, -um, *solids*-shall we say? unless you filled the old brown glass Creamora jar in the sink and poured it into the bowl to assist.

Usually, we would go out for a game of putt-putt golf which was our one and only outing of the entire visit. Sure, it sounded fun and exciting, but quickly lost it's lustre as we spent most of our time waiting and earning new freckles as our large group slowly meandered through the course and putted our putts one by one in the vicious heat of the Florida sun. My fair skin never made it home without a nice, bright red sunburn for a souvenir.

Needless to say it wasn't exactly a dream vacation for a seven year old, but the highlight of the trip was in the evenings. The oppressive heat would let up a bit and the stinky sulphur water showers we had taken left us wet-headed and temporarily relieved from the sweltering stickiness we had endured for the last 24 hours. We would all gather around the dining room table and play Uno and Skip-Bo for what seemed like hours. Everyone looked forward to it. Watching Grandma shuffle cards like the fanciest dealer any Vegas casiono ever saw was fascinating to us since she was a quiet, coo lots wearing preacher's wife. Round and round the table we would go as the night grew cooler and more enjoyable. Pretty soon the sting of the sunburn and the misery of the hot night's sleep ahead were forgotten as we tried to win a hand or two. That is what I remember the most about going to Grandma and Grandpa's house- besides the upside down eagle on their living room light fixture, and of course, the brown glass Creamora jar.

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