Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Strolling down memory lane

I visited these memories back in 2008 in the early days of Chat with Vera, but thought it would be nice to share some of these memories with those of you who are more recent readers.  So let's take a mini stroll down memory lane.  Grab a cup of tea or java and remember with me......

Born just prior to the US entering WWII, I remember lots of things coming about. However, I really don't remember anything about the war. Mom showed me the ration stamps that she still had and shared stories, and Dad showed me a German Luger (sp) gun my uncle brought back. I lost an uncle in the war and 2 other uncles fought in Europe.

Great G'dad, G'dad, and Dad were all shoe repairmen until Dad went into sales in order to put food on the table. The name of their shoe repair shop was The Big Ike.  I remember running all over the neighborhood, playing with other kids, doors unlocked day and night, ice cream cones as a special treat at the corner drug store, five cent cokes in a bottle, five cent ice cream cones. Yes, we had a Bijou movie theater, but it was in the wrong end of town so I couldn't go. I did go to other movies in the "better" end of town. I remember when Technicolor came to the "silver screen." No, I don't remember silent films. That was prior to my time.

We walked to town and back carrying what we bought. Mom walked to and from the grocer and carried a bag groceries in each arm home. Groceries were usually bought for that particular day.  It was a corner grocery store and not a "supermarket."  If we rode the bus, it was five cents. I remember getting the seafood market deliver our fish on Fridays. The boy came on a bicycle and the fish was wrapped in newspaper and tied with a string. It was caught that morning. just off the coast of our city in North Carolina. So good! I remember a local milk company delivering milk to our home - in fact I remember farther back - a local farmer delivered his own cow's milk to our home. Whole milk and it was so good - cream floating on the top.

I remember an old lady coming to our back door fairly regularly and asking Mom if she had any work she could do. Mom would sometimes let her "damp mop" the kitchen for a little pay; but no matter what, she would always make a plate of food for Dot so she could have a decent meal - whether or not there was any work to be done - and give her a quarter (it went a long way then) for whatever. Keep in mind, that quarters were scarce in our home. Dot would show up at the shoe repair shop, too. Dad would make sure her shoes were wearable. We were poor. But Dot was poorer.

I can remember being a teenager when TV came to town. We couldn't afford one at the time and anyway, the reception was very poor. You had to get reception from the station that was 150 miles away. You had to have an antenna on top your home that was big and several feet tall. My brother got married and moved into our upstairs apartment. He and his wife got a TV! Wow! I can remember being invited to some watch some of the programs. There was "snow" on the screen - but not so much we couldn't enjoy it. Later when our town got a station, Dad found the money for a TV! We had arrived!

My wedding pictures were in black and white. Our escape vehicle was a Ford Fairlaine 500 '57. (I think that is how it was referred to.) Of course, it was my brother's. Our vehicle was a '54 Chevy that was bought used. Most of all I remember a childhood of ring-around-the-roses, birthday cakes, chasing each other all over the neighborhood, falling from my bike onto the brick paved street, swinging from a tree-rope in the neighbor's year, riding my bike good distances from home and not having to worry about anything, China-berry (tree berries) pee-shooter fights, Merthiolate on cuts, alcohol poured over scrapes, walks to the parks and swinging from the very high swings and sliding down the big slides, chasing fireflies in front of the house while my parents and grandparents sat rocking on the front porch. I remember happiness.

I remember the ice truck. So some in the neighborhood must have had ice boxes. We had a refrigerator! Mom bought sliced bread. She baked biscuits or corn bread daily. Sometimes she fried cornmeal in patties in the iron skillet.  That was very good.  She did not make yeast bread except for rolls on special occasions. There was Monopoly, and several other board games . The Green Hornet, The Lone Ranger (I remember it coming on TV when we finally got one.), and other radio programs. We sat in my Grand Dad's bedroom around his radio to listen. Of course, we had to have already finished our homework. Sitting on the front porch in the summer after "supper." G'mama visiting from South Carolina and her giving me the "dimes" to go across the street to the corner store to get cups of chocolate ice cream. The "dime" cups were bigger than the "nickle" cups. Major treat!

I remember happiness.


  1. What fun memories Vera! I know my mom probably shares a lot of those same coming of age memories. Me, I was born in '77, so I'm just a kid to you.

    Treasure those memories. :)

  2. Hi Vera,
    Is that a picture of you and Sammy? There is one of me that looks a lot like that - kin folk do tend to resemble each other! I remember loving to get to stay at "Aunt V's in the summer. One summer Sammy and Mary Jane took me to the beach. I thought I was so grown up going with a young married couple. I got so sunburned. I also remember your wedding and how beautiful you were. Of course I remember Aunt V's cooking. She had that cabinet that held a flour bin. You set your bowl under it an sifted your flour right into it. I have some of the same memories of the drug store brick streets etc. But mostly I remembe being loved. With very fond memories, Cousin Prissy

    1. Hi Cousin Prissy.... Yes, that is Sammy and I. I was pretty much his shadow - much to his chagrin. It was fun going to the beach with Sammy and MJ. I remember his driving Dad's outboard in the sound and water skiing behind it. Such fun!

      Thank you for remembering our wedding. We did have a lovely wedding though we didn't have much to pay for it with. Perhaps one of these days, I'll scan some wedding pictures and write a remembering my wedding. That might be fun.

      Yes, we were very much loved. And yes, my Mom (Aunt V) could really cook - and so effortless, too.

    2. Any pictures would be a joy to see. I need to come up and bring my "Houston picture" and we can copy and share!

  3. On that picture, you look like Becky did when I knew you. :)

    Your reminiscences are bittersweet: what a wonderful place the US was between about 40 and 65! And what heartbreak to experience its demise. {sniff}

    Thanx for reposting this, Mrs. Godley. It was a treat to read. :)

    Polly Glot


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