Thursday, October 15, 2009

My First Steps at Holtdale

I have many good memories of the first ten years of my life which were lived in that old frame house. Even though it was in the middle of the depression, we never felt deprived. Life was normal to us children even though the adults were acutely aware of the difficulties of the times.
I'm never certain where true memories begin and repeated telling of incidents by family members either fortifies or provides memories for pre-retention times in young people. Some of the things I will relate, particularly about my preschool days, have to be provided memories. Others, I'm sure are true memories, however, I won't attempt to differentiate, I'll just relate the incidents.
On my nine-month birthday a neighbor, Jap Groscrost, was visiting and all were sitting around the living room talking. My father was holding me up and moving me about in a practice walk when Jap' got on his knees and coaxed me to come to him. They tell me that after several false starts, I took my first unassisted steps and toddled to him. A monster had been freed from its tether and nothing down low was safe thereafter.
Late in my toddling stage, I’m told, I would run about the yard sucking a bottle-nipple as a pacifier, which I called a "tipple." On the farm we had chickens, ducks, turkeys, cows and pigs. The chickens, ducks and turkeys had the run of the place and one old gobbler considered himself the yard major-domo and lord-protector of the harem. It seems that I was in the habit of chousing the hen birds to see them run and squawk. Old Mr. Gobbler decided one day that enough was enough and caught me in mid-chouse, downed me, and took the tipple out of my mouth and ran off. I guess my new found courage "got up and went" for off I ran to Mom screeching that the mean old gobbler had taken my tipple. The moral of this little tale is, no matter how big and self important we become, there is always someone just a little bigger and more important.

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