Days Gone By

Sitting here on my front porch I’m reminded of days, not really that long ago, but still days gone by that my kids will never get to experience.

I remember going to visit the lady down the street that was always cooking. You would almost always find her in a long dress and apron, with her white hair put up in a bun on top of her head. It didn’t matter if you had ate or not, you were expected to “have a bite” before you left, most times you left carrying food home as well.

Then there was the gentleman with the horn rimmed glasses and silver chained wallet, that lived at the end of the dead end road about a mile from our house who owned a small farm. There you would find goats, chickens, cows and horses, we played with them all, under the watchful yet delighted eye of this gentle, elderly man.

We would help him do his chores and catch up on projects he had been working on, as he lived alone widowed many years prior, there was never any talk of money, we were happy to do it.

Around the corner you had the community fish pond/swimming hole. All of us kids (of varying ages) would congregate on a Saturday morning to see who was the better fisherman. In the afternoon we would return to swim.

We would return home before dark to avoid the dreadful question “where have you been!” by mom. That would have definitely NOT had a pleasant ending, We would get cleaned up, have supper, and settle in for the evening to watch one of the choice of three channels we had, on a television with the antenna wrapped in aluminum foil.

Fast forward to today, and it’s not safe to be sitting on the porch without some type of protection, much less allowing children to walk down the road unsupervised.

As for the sweet lady that always enjoyed cooking for the community kids, in today’s world people would be afraid if the child got sick for any reason at all they would be sued and accused on social media of “poisoning the child”

As for the gentle old farmer that we learned so much from, that kids today may never know, he would most likely be accused of being strange or a pedophile because he had children around him.

As for the community fishpond/swimming hole today it would be posted with no trespassing signs and cameras due to the owner being afraid of being sued or the property being misused.

As i write this, i’m sitting here wondering, what happened; where did we go wrong? Then I realize, I can turn to the news and social media to find the answers to those questions. It’s truly sad that society has gotten so afraid {and for good reason I might add based on the news and social media} that today’s children will most likely never know a lot of the “old ways” or have the joy we did learning them.

It’s doubtful we will ever see those days again but I try to share stories from my childhood with my kids, and hope they will pass them on to their kids. It’s wonderful to think of the wonderful times we had and savor the memories of DAYS GONE BY.

Johnny Harvill

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