Old days

When I think back about growing up times have certainly changed. Just a few random thoughts.

Outdoor toliet was the facility in winter and in summer. The pump house was at least 75 to 100 yards from the house and we carried pails of water winter and summer. My kids were always told that is why my arms are so long from carrying water from the pump house to the house. The only plumbing in the house was a sink that drained directly out of the house to the ground outside.

We had electricity, a radio and I can remember the first TV that we got. I was read to and taught to read at an early age by my sister and mother. My dad read to me when he had time and always illustrated the book with his own funny stuff. We had animals all the time, horses, cattle, pigs, chickens and sheep. We also had rabbits, dogs and cats. We had wild rabbits running all over and mice. Ah yes, every time you turned a bale of hay over dozens of mice would run every which direction.

I played many hours of cowboys and indians. I played many games of basketball in our tin shed out of the elements. I won every imaginary game with a last second shot. I had a baseball glove and a ball which I threw striking out numerous batters including Babe Ruth, Mickey Mantle, Roger Maris and Lou Gehrig. When I read on my own I read every Hardy Boy book and all of the Tarzan of the Apes books. I also scared myself silly by reading my Dad’s “True Detective” magazines of which there was always a stack by the bed.

Kristy and Robbie

Mostly I listened and learned both from my Mother and Dad.

They were both in their early 40’s when I was born so I listened with fascination to the old days when they had grown up. Both of them were born in 1909 so those times seemed far away. My Dad could talk from morning to night non-stop and I became familiar with people long dead before I was born.

I grew up wanting to be a cowboy, a hunter, and especially a basketball player. These things I hold dear now, because they are both gone, and I treasure these memories when I was innocent about how the world worked. When you are young you just want to be everything your parents are interested in, at least I did.

I miss these wonderful people who raised me and now that I realize they were just as human as I am and have taken them off the pedestal I had them on at that early age, I thank the Good Lord for the education they gave me out on the Prairie of Northern Montana.

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  1. Michelle says:

    Very cool story, Russ. .I can certainly relate. I wish I had known those many years ago all of the challenges the two of them had. I sure do now, and I love and appreciate them so very much. As always, thank you for sharing! Michelle

  2. Slim says:

    Thank you for dropping by Michelle, I always appreciate your comments..

  3. Julia says:

    I related to your early childhood as well. Life was simple but seemed fun in a way.
    I was born in England but used to visit my Grandfather in Ireland. No running water or electricity then! I loved fetching water from the pump down the street from his house and all the kerosine lanterns glowing in the house. The big cast iron kettle was always in over the fire. I sure didn’t like the outhouse and still don’t like them when camping.
    I enjoy your stories and love reading about homesteading.

  4. Slim says:

    Thank you Julia for your comment and dropping by.. Much Appreciated..

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