Monday, November 18, 2013

Surviving a Pre-PC Childhood

Frankly I had a great childhood.  We weren't rich by any means, but we had a good family, including extended relations.  But looking back, I'm sometimes amazed we made it all the way through without any of us suffering severe problems.  We weren't bad kids, and we certainly had caring, thoughtful parents who did their best with us, but we did manage to find things to get into.  Things that today could land the parents in problems with authorities if anyone cared to call those people and alert them as to what was going on.

When we were young in the Antelope Valley, Dad worked in the alfalfa fields, usually hauling hay.  At night he would bring home the flat-bed truck, usually with a couple of bales of hay still on board.  He'd load us three older ones up there (ages, probably 3 to 6) and add in a few of the neighbor kids and away we would go.  He'd drive all around the area and we'd pretend we were in a parade and wave to all the spectators we would see.  The adult supervision was the one behind the steering wheel.  The ones in the back were on their word of honor that we would not fall off the truck.  However, we would still move freely around on the truck, from one side to the other, and jump and down and yell at all we saw on the sidewalks.  Today that would probably be called child neglect and endangerment.  We called it fun.  And none of us were ever hurt.

In Oklahoma we lived on a farm.  There were always a few empty 50-gallon barrels around that would make for great entertainment.  If we weren't walking the barrels, we'd get inside and someone would push us to get started and we'd tumble head over heels inside them as we barreled down and across the countryside.  What was originally contained in them?  I have no idea.  I'm sure it wouldn't be approved of today for childhood play, not without extensive testing and cleaning.  Again, we made it through and had fun doing it. 

Sometimes my brother and I would rob Mom's garden, get up on the chicken coop and throw our stash at the poor chickens below.  Oh the squawking and cacophony that ensued!!  It never made me a great ball player, for I sure didn't have good aim with fruit or with a ball.  But if we got tired of the venture, we'd just wipe the carrots and tomatoes on our sleeves and bite into them for a great snack.  Mom never did appreciate this activity, but we did.

There were other things as well.  And I will admit that I'm glad my own child didn't follow in our footsteps in doing these things (at least, not that I know of).  But it was fun.  And, oh! The memories they generated.

What did you do for fun when you were young?  I'd love for you to share.


  1. Yep, I'm right there with you, except we live in rural Alabama :)
    I just popped over from Jackie's blog.
    Love your blog.
    Rick, your latest follower.

  2. Thank you Rick. I appreciate your stopping by and please come back. - Karen

  3. I think most kids do/did mischievous things when their parents never knew. Our daughter tells us some of the things she did which we would not have been happy about had we known. I know I did things when younger too. Great story Karen - Dave

    1. Oh, so true, Dave. Some things are best left unknown. We can't change the past and what we don't know won't tarnish the future. Especially if we are talking about childhood escapades. (But weren't they fun when we did them?) - Karen