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Field of Memories

My next literary endeavor, Field of Memories, is in process with a projected completion of early autumn. This heartwarming collection of short stories is a life work, and what a glorious journey it has been—slowly filling pages with precious, unforgettable moments. I invite you to take a brief, yet remarkable trip with me to the summer of 1955 and experience a space in time when life was just a little simpler. Likewise, if you have a special memory from this era that you’d like to share with our community, we’d love to hear it.   

The Little Blue Record Player   

Mom was packed and anxious to leave for Disneyland in southern California. She and the church choir were traveling on a big tour bus to the famous Mickey Mouse theme park to perform for several days. It was early summer of 1955, and I stood in the church’s parking lot to wave farewell as the bus made its way down the road. A smile quickly appeared on my face. I’d be staying home with Dad, and everything had the makings of a picnic in the park.     

Of course, I didn’t wear any of the clothes Mom laid out for me but instead selected my own for the next few days while she was gone. Nothing matched. Dad didn’t even care that I wore my black Sunday school shoes, lace-trimmed socks, red-flowered shorts, and an orange-striped T-shirt—every day—for a week. Best of all, he didn’t even mind that I played with Marie, who was four grades ahead of me and several inches taller. We also ate different things, such as hotdogs and root beer floats from Foster’s Freeze, instead of food cooked in the kitchen. Bedtime was falling asleep on the sofa while watching Gene Autry, Wyatt Earp, and Death Valley Days with Dad. Needless to say, baths were few and far between. I was living the dream.   

As fate would have it, my vacation was short-lived. When Mom got home, I was ushered straight to the bathtub. My shorts, T-shirt, underwear, and lace socks went equally as fast to the laundry room. My black Sunday school shoes were scuffed beyond repair and thrown in the trash. In no time, my hair was washed, curled, and pulled back with matching barrettes. My clothes were color-coordinated once again. The aroma of fried chicken and biscuits wafted from the kitchen. Mom was back, and with her reappearance came the warm feeling of life as it was supposed to be.     Once everything returned to normal and was nicely in order, Mom surprised me with a little blue record player, an assortment of Disney records, and Mickey Mouse ears. I was in heaven. The sound of Cinderella singing, “A Dream is a Wish Your Heart Makes,” was heard throughout the house for the next several weeks. 

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