Eleventh of a Million Memories

One of my favorite summer memories was LUNCH!  You may be thinking, what a pig!  The reason I liked lunch in the summer wasn’t because of the food; it was because of the lunch table.  If my dad was working the “midnight shift” or the morning shift, he wouldn’t be home or awake to eat lunch; but if he was working the “4-12” shift he would be.  That was my favorite!  I really was a Daddy’s girl!

My parents were born in 1920 and 1922.  They lived during difficult economic times and through our nation’s depression.  At lunch, my parents would share stories of their youth, their “courtship,” their early married years, etc.  I LOVED to hear every one of them (even multiple times!) and would beg them to share.  I remember on more than one occasion, my mom looking up at the clock to see we had been sitting there for hours; which was perfectly fine with me!

I always loved when dad would share about his life as a young boy.  He told us he use to deliver milk every morning in a horse-drawn wagon (even weekdays before school).  He explained that the wagon was covered, but it had openings on both sides – so he could exit on either side of the street.  He said he had delivered milk to the same homes for so long, the horses had the route memorized (and timed).  My dad was an athlete so he ran when he delivered the milk.  Not only did he finish faster when he ran, but he would get inside faster (where it was warm).  On this particular occasion, it was a snowy and icy morning (which didn’t cancel or delay his job – the milk still had to be delivered).  About mid-way through the run, as he was approaching the wagon to jump back in, he hit a patch of ice.  Fortunately, he still landed in the wagon, but unfortunately, he slid completely through the wagon and fell out the other side!  The horses automatically took off for the next stop!  My dad had to run to catch the wagon before the horses took off at the next stop!

What I haven’t told you is that my dad grew up in South Dakota, where the winters were brutal.  And, of course, my dad had to walk to school in the snow, up hill both ways!  (For the younger ones reading, parents were famous for telling stories of how hard their lives were in comparison to the easy lives of their children.  And we, the children, had to make fun of everything they said.)

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