Saturday, 8 February 2014

Nebraska 10 - Omaha, Red Wagon and Chocolate Doughnuts

The Nebraska and Omaha theme started as a bit of fun as well as a journey and I will continue travelling a little further. Some of the poems and quotes are ones that have been familiar for a long time; some have cropped up through research. Other research has been in uncovering parts of the past still relatively unknown, and adding to that recollected as if yesterday – as they say.

One mix of the new and old is the photo above. This is at the top of the road where I lived around the ages of 6 to 8. Just to the left of the blue car as you look down the road from the top corner is the duplex that was my home [I found a direct photo of that but won’t post] with the porch still there where I remember sitting daily for long periods watching the cars go by, looking out for the cool ones which included – I don’t know why – those with grey primer paint: my romantic recall is that these were custom cars in the making but experience suggests they might have been cheap repairs like the ones I bodged as an adult.

But it’s the foreground corner shot with fire hydrant that is important to me. My most vivid memory of this time is collecting loads of my toys and putting them into my red wagon – every American kid had a red wagon in the 50s/60s  and perhaps still does today – and I pulled this up to that very corner spot and tried to panhandle my ‘goods’ to passing strangers so I could get cash to buy a chocolate doughnut at the bakery that used to be there, somewhere to the left of the carpet shop - and I don’t remember a carpet shop being there then, but I wouldn’t because the doughnuts were all that mattered.

I obviously sneaked out of the house and I don’t remember if I got caught by my parents or just returned home, my entrepreneurial escapade undiscovered. I don’t recall, either, if I sold anything and was able to buy a doughnut. I’m guessing not, and there must have been passing observations of that weird kid. Perhaps it was sweet kid. There's always a bit of romance in remembering.

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