Reflections: The hazy days of summer

By Evelyn Long - Contributing Columnist

I understand that as one adds years to life, the tendency is to look back to those years when “livin’ was easy.”

I have been thinking about those times this summer of so much turmoil and I love recalling the summer months free of classrooms and studies. We lived on a farm and had our chores to do each day but I remember playing baseball with my sisters and neighbors in our front yard.

I could hit and pitch a pretty good ball; we also played croquet, a game my father would join in playing. He explained that was a game he played with his friends and family while growing up in Cincinnati.

We had one bicycle among my three sisters and I and we put it to regular use. In those days we had no fear riding our bike on the road — a county road not heavily traveled. With an early curfew we never rode the bike after dark but that was when we played other games and caught lightning bugs and placed them in glass jars.

Our Collie dog, Curly, and Pomeranian pet, Bingo, accompanied us on our picnics in our woods. The neighbor hood ‘gang” was part of our picnics and the games we played in our woods. We even called our selves The Gangbusters and don’t ask me why. I don’t remember because there were no gangs; maybe a deterrent?

What a peaceful place that was with a small creek running through it in which we waded, avoiding the crawdaddies.

On rainy days we would gather in the loft of our barn. I can still hear the rain hitting the tin roof of that barn as we played safely and comfortably in the loft, with the cows softly chewing their cud down below.

We even had “funerals” for our pets, usually cats, that died. Very somber as we sang and gave a little message before burying the furry creature that was fitted in a shoe box.

All too soon, it was time to climb aboard that yellow bus again to gain another year of education. I can’t imagine, though, not living in those times and experiencing those carefree summers with my parents, sisters and the best neighborhood “kids” in the world.

80 years ago, July, 1940: Snyder’s Health Parlor in Cardington, installed a new machine that registered the blood pressure of every organ and gland in the body. Eight truck drivers were arrested by State Highway Patrolmen during the first week of July for driving over loaded commercial trucks through Cardington. Mayor Frank Aliga fined each driver $25 and costs.

60 years ago, July 1960: Mrs. Harry S. Bennett of Cardington, was elected as grand secretary of Job’s Daughters for the state of Ohio. Membership in Job’s Daughters was open to all unmarried girls ages 12-20 and having a proper Masonic relationship.

Max Weise, employed at Morrow Lanes, attended the AMF Pinspotters Training School in Shelby, Ohio.

50 years ago, July, 1970: William Kreis of Cardington, retired after 39 years of state and county highway employment in Morrow County.

By Evelyn Long

Contributing Columnist