I’m sitting here at the ‘pooter getting all my ducks in a row, thinking about how to start this little ride report and my mind starts drifting. Daydreaming is something I’m pretty good at…never was much good at anything else. A commotion outside my window snaps me back into real time and I swing my $49.95 Odd Lots ‘pooter chair around so I can see what’s-a-happenin’ over at the neighbor‘s place.
I’m watching as an 11 year old boy with crewcut blonde hair runs out the front door of the tiny 5 room house where he and his 3 brothers share the same small bedroom. He’s wearing a faded, red pullover shirt with blue striping and well-worn cutoff jeans. On his fast moving feet are ragged, washed out, canvas Converse tennis shoes that were, at some point before he ever owned them, black.
I hear the weathered, wooden screen door slam behind him, a familiar sound as that door is never closed lightly by any one of the kids who live there. I watch him as he dashes across the front porch, banks left and flies down through the sloping back yard that leads to his destination. From somewhere inside the house his mother is calling after him, “And don’t you dare go down there to that creek!” But by the time she’s finished her warning he’s already half way there.
“That creek” is Killwell Run and it meanders through a field about 200 yards south of the house that unleashed the boy and it empties into Duck Creek which lies about a quarter mile to the west.
I know exactly what that kid is thinking and what he’s looking for as he’s running through the field toward “that creek”. I know exactly how he’s feeling, his anticipation and his sense of wanderment. I know because that 11 year old boy with the crewcut and blown out Converse tennis shoes is me. And I’m watching myself as I’m running through my childhood memories.
It’s 1966 and the world is a much bigger and better place. Southeastern Ohio in a rural area with streams, creeks, hills and lots of wooded acres was a great place for me to grow up…..I was NEVER bored. Always looking for new stuff to do, new places to go, new areas to conquer…..unfamiliar territory.
Don't know why I'm lost all the time...
Everyone is always telling me where to go.