Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Booghost on the prowl.......



I remember growing up at Ottertail and hold fond memories of my youth. The memories become more vivid and come more often as I grow older. I’ve told people over the years that I feel that my childhood was the best that anyone could have. When you are young, you want the years to pass quickly as each new age presents you with new opportunities, your own bed, or bedroom, taking a walk by yourself, or the hand-me-down bike. This continues into the early teens when you start yearning for solitude, drivers permit, and finally graduation from that damned Prentice High and figuring out just what the hell you are going to do the rest of your life.



You don’t miss anything yet because you just left it, and you can travel home for the weekend and feel comfortable and everything seems the way it should be. Then somewhere along the way things change, you’re not at home as often. Someone moved away, the general store sits empty never again to hold canned goods or wool mittens, the old barn comes down, which gives us a new great view of the east woods, but the playground of my youth is gone.



Right now I can smell the fresh cut grass and can feel the thick carpet on my bare back as the sun beats down on me, crickets singing, grasshoppers hopping, butterflies fluttering in and out of sight, as I gaze at a single white cloud that seems impossibly high in the sky, as it drifts slowly east. That dark green grass that only gets that dark in northern Wisconsin, hiding grass snakes and toads that knew I would pick them up if they left that cover.



Most of all I miss my family, my father the teacher, my mother the nurturer and my siblings no matter the differences we had. I miss that old house that gave me a lifetime of the sweetest memories anyone could ever have.




A short list of what I miss,



Feeding stones to Blackie

Running around a yard that seemed endless to a young boy

Dad coming home with fresh trout

Fresh rolls Mom just made

The sound of fat bike tires over a gravel road

The front porch, endless hours on or around that porch

Lilacs

The South garden

Secret paths around the old sheds, well we thought they were secret

Fresh wash on the line

Eating plums off the plum tree

Playing catch over the pump house

Rolling inside a tire

The gravel pit

Snow tunnels in drifts

Snowmen with leaves stuck to the snow

Skating in the swamp around tag Alders

The old apple tree

Horse tree

The rock pile

Running from hornets

The island

Playing in the woods

Coming in cold and wet to hot chocolate and fresh bread toast

Sundrop soda and popcorn Saturday night

The thunder storms rattling the windows in the middle of the night

The sun setting and sitting in the front hall feeling the warmth

Jack frost on the inside of the window

Fresh Balsam

Crappe frying

The feeble attempt at a tree house

Smoke bombs made of dried pine needles and a tin can



I miss when we all lived at home.



Now I wish I would have savored those moments more and time would have slowed down.

Tim.


21 Comments:

At 8:40 PM, May 31, 2006, Blogger Yram said...

Booghost (whatever that means!), you captured it. We did have the best youth...safe and warm and taken care of. For some reason I think often of "Skating in the swamp around tag Alders". Not sure why...sheesh...it was as big as a throw rug but somehow we had fun. "Fresh wash on the line" and then getting to fall asleep on those smooth, worn sheets that smelled like the sky and sun. Oh man...the pure luxury of it. Indescribable.
Fresh fish, fresh bread...imagine the energy expended by mom and dad to provide all that loveliness. I sure wish Sadet could see that yard...she wouldn't believe it! The trails in the lilacs were cool, no? And they were so big...no, we were so small.
Weren't we lucky after all. M

 
At 8:43 PM, May 31, 2006, Blogger Yram said...

You know tim...blackie did not like those stones! he was just trying to make you happy.

 
At 9:27 PM, May 31, 2006, Blogger litzym said...

And how many kids get to grow up like that today? Tim, that was such a beautiful description of how wonderful & cozy childhood was for all of you (and even for me and the other cousins). I hope that (god forbid) if I ever have my own munchkins, I can give them memories like that. What I miss most is "Christmas at Grandma & Grandpa's"...I remember looking forward to Christmas Eve for months...practically from February on! I know I drove my mom crazy when she was trying to wrap gifts and make her butterscotch pies, bugging her about going to Ogema. I knew Lucy would have rusks, and rolls, and cookies waiting, not to mention the world's tallest, most beautiful Christmas tree. Seriously, I thought it was the biggest tree ever.The house seemed gigantic to me, too...so many cool rooms (the peppermint room, and the alice in wonderland room!) and crevices to explore. And it always had that certain smell...some sort of mix of fudge, balsam, and fresh bread. And though all of the food and gifts and decorations were exciting, there was just one thing I just couldn't wait for...my cousins! I counted the minutes until I could see Rosie & Bryn (to play horses!), and Liz and Angie (they were sooo cool), and Cyndi, Jenny, & Paul (GROWN UPS!). Time really changes the structure of family...the big one turns into many smaller ones, which grow into their own over time. I miss you all!

 
At 9:49 PM, May 31, 2006, Anonymous magstoneesf said...

Thank you Tim and Mary - It was wonderful to read your comments - We were very lucky children indeed!

 
At 9:52 PM, May 31, 2006, Anonymous Margaret said...

I miss the milk that we left in the glass beside the bed being frozen on those very cold winter mornings -

 
At 10:02 PM, May 31, 2006, Blogger Yram said...

Can you imagine that! frozen milk in the bedroom! hearty folks we are!

 
At 10:14 PM, May 31, 2006, Anonymous Margaret said...

Yes we were hearty - need to muster up some of that courage that it took to put our bare feet down on those floors of years gone by -

 
At 10:25 PM, May 31, 2006, Blogger Yram said...

the muster to place the feet and run down the stairs to the oil heater! yes! it was monumental! and we survived....yikes. life was good.

 
At 10:31 PM, May 31, 2006, Blogger Yram said...

Litzy...such nice memories. and you were the lovely (devil/angel) girl that could drap herself over grandpa Herbie and make him so happy! Aren't we all lucky! It sure takes a long time to figure that out for some of us! too bad about that but at least the sun rises before the lights go out completely!

 
At 10:38 PM, May 31, 2006, Blogger Yram said...

Tim...you have got me going. The Island. wasn't that a hoot. so deep and mysterious and right next door. The island of trees. oh man...that was fun.

 
At 11:22 PM, May 31, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tim, you came through with something wonderful. Good to hear these things while still alive and not in a tribute after one is demised??? (used correctly?) Good to hear from Litzy in this endeavor.

Lucy

 
At 7:06 AM, June 01, 2006, Blogger polkafan said...

oh uncle Tim thanks so much for making me go to work with red eyes. I think that some how my sentimentality was nourshed in that bastion of thoughts and of late night arguements.

 
At 8:27 AM, June 01, 2006, Blogger nwadc said...

My Dear Hubby... Ok crying at work is not a good thing.. I love you and loved reading about your child hood I never knew you could write so well that was beautiful.

 
At 8:47 AM, June 01, 2006, Anonymous booghost said...

Thanks Gene for inserting the pictures. It really captured the thought.
boo.

 
At 1:13 PM, June 01, 2006, Blogger Spartacas said...

Hey Timmy!! How in the world can I be a pushy pig atty with a runny nose and watery eyes?!? You captured our childhood perfectly - it was indeed the best.

To make it through the rest of the day in the proper combative mood, I will be thinking of a few things you left out...my barbie that was burned to a crisp in a mysterious fire in the pump house, some wicked demented Mit chasing me with those really pointy barber shears while mom and dad left us alone, the DANCe OF THE ANTS followed by the threat of a lengthy spit globual and someone laughing his ass off while George went mental with a big old pine snake (remember those ones Mr. Dillon would pay for if they were over five feet which you carried in a gunny sack!)

There....I feel like I can go back to court and shoot my mouth off with confidence (and no sniveling for now).

Thanks Tim....and Gene.

 
At 8:18 PM, June 01, 2006, Blogger Yram said...

(the peppermint room, and the alice in wonderland room!)

Explain please! The peppermint room...the West bedroom. Alice in Wonderland? the "tank" room?

 
At 9:11 PM, June 01, 2006, Anonymous litzym said...

peppermint room, yes the west room, with the candy-striper walls. alice in wonderland, the little red carpet room - it was scary and enchanting to young little girls. especially after big L showed us the great mirror magic. i thought jaberwockies lived in the old trunk...

 
At 10:31 PM, June 01, 2006, Anonymous booghost said...

Mary, yes the island was spooky at first. When I was small I only ventured in if I could still see the field. I guess I thought that once in I may not be able to return.

 
At 11:28 PM, June 01, 2006, Blogger Yram said...

boog: i only remember Mark and Earl having some kind of alder prison there. very innocent of course. we all returned from the island only to venture into the planet of gr-ups. arghhhh.
it was a wonderful time and i feel so lucky to have the memories...and barbie be damned. she deserves a dousing in gas and oil!
i remember the field seeming so big when i was young and recall playing Joey and Packy and running across that field like it was the wilds of colorado or wherever there was wide open space like that...even though i thought it was all make up. after living out here i know it was not. weird. and picking goldenrod!

 
At 1:08 AM, June 02, 2006, Blogger Yram said...

"especially after big L showed us the great mirror magic."
okay...fess up. what is the mirror magic? standing at one end of that cool round mirror and being out of body and floating and faces looking like monsters? heehee.....

 
At 7:28 PM, June 02, 2006, Anonymous litzym said...

yep, that's the magic i speak of...it was all so fun.

 

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