Sunday, November 18, 2007

Thnow! Thnow!

We had a kid next door to us who seemed to have a speech problem when he was young. “Seemed to” are the operative words here; I never was sure if it was real or just another one of his things.

Anyway, the white stuff would come down overnight for the first time and we’d hear this shout, “Thnow! Thnow!” After a while it was “Snow! Snow!” and life became that much duller on our street.

I guess I put up with it because he had a sandbox in the backyard and I’d never seen one before. Of course, when you live a block or so from a large beach, you don’t think in terms of a sandbox. You want to play in the sand? Take a three minute walk down the street and there’s all you want.

His parents, especially his R.N. mother, were somewhat (!) protective and the thought of him going down and playing in that dirty sand with all those horseshoe crabs and seaweed and who knows what . . . well, that wasn’t to be. A boy might get sick.

From what I’ve heard about allergies and stuff, it appears that our mother did it right: we never wore shoes in the summer, we played on the beach, got scraped by the sea shells, swam underwater and took in too much sea water. Never got sick. We were probably immune to everything by that time; we had been exposed to everything the ocean could throw at us, in small amounts, and while Johnny got ill, we went our way.


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