At some point, you become a homework assignment. Whether through actual “help” or needed for subject material.
“So i need to know something.” Smiling daughter says.
“And that would be. .. ” trailing my words.
“What did you do when you were my age? Did you have games? Was your family fun? I need an interview for school. You are more interesting than Mom.” Toothy smile is telling Mom said ask Dad. Kid has a future in sales.
“When I was 12… we played outside. Everyday was a pickup game of football or baseball. I did last year of little league. But we meet at a field and played. We ride bikes. Everywhere we went was on a bike. You went home when it got dark.” Dear god I’m talking like I’m old. “You know we didn’t have video games” she’ll never know about Atari.
as Aunt Val living with you, Gramps and Granny? Who were your friends? And girls?” she’s got a list here.
“Val was 17, worked in evening and had her own car. Maybe she did live there.” Joke falls flat “Gramps was still teaching. Granny went to college. They came home late a couple nights. We had to cook our own food and do laundry. Your grandparents made us do chores.” I’m pausing. The girl question, yikes!
“I ran around with Travis, Christine and Molly. We went to a game room and roller skating. Just hanging out with each other. No dating then. But one by one they moved away.”
“How come you got to run around like that?” She’s even sounds like her mom at times.
“It was really like that at one time. People looked out for kids. They also knew where you
lived, So we didn’t need phones back then. Besides some people don’t answer phones.”
Back to her list. “What was your favorite subject? And didn’t you have a paper route?”
“Science, we starting to learn about the planet. Mr Frescan was all about hands on understanding. You didn’t learn about volcanos, you learned about Hawaii.” Funny, I remember four teachers in school.
“It wasn’t till 13, I became a paper boy. Back then Cleveland had two papers. After school, six days a week. I used a bike delivering 70 houses. You put the bag on the handlebars. Folded the paper up and tossed it by the door. Well a couple had boxes for the paper.”
“Ok, finally last one. Why did you go to your grandparents during summer vacation?”
“My parents were really smart. They drove us to nowhere Ohio,
and left us for two weeks. They got the house to themselves. My grandparents taught me about gardening, canning food, and learned about old people. At the time, it started well but got so boring. Running around a small town isn’t the same.”
She’s done with her list of questions. I know mom set me up and gave her things to ask. I’m left with spending a couple minutes with back then. Life was easy. Days were so long.