Trail of a Heart 5 – Great Performances
My oldest sister, Carol, was pretty creative in getting compliance from her young charges. One of her more notable performances was when she went through the house with a butcher knife with blood (ketchup) dripping off it, pretending she was deranged. We believed her!
We were a fairly lively and inventive bunch and hard to keep up with. There was the time when I was playing horse with Elaine, the second oldest girl just two years older than me. She was the horse and I was the rider. As we turned out of our bedroom into the tiny L-shaped hallway, my “horsie” was insisting that I get off. I wasn’t going for it. Let her buck away, I could hold on! Well, she bucked, and I couldn’t hold on.
In that cramped little hall with hardwood floors, I was deposited on my face. My glasses that year had a gold metal trim across the top. That trim gashed my forehead causing a profusion of instantaneous blood.
Well, needless to say, Carol came running, while someone got on the phone to call our parents. There was a whole lot of scurrying about. Carol took me into the bathroom and attempted to stop the flow of blood. Everyone was pretty shook up, not the least being me. I confess, however, that I wasn’t upset until I saw the blood. It didn’t actually hurt right away.
My parents took me to the doctor where I received stitches. Carol insists that she was always getting in trouble for “allowing” us to get in so much trouble. On this occasion, she truly did get in trouble. Elaine received her share of scolding. All I remember is the pain. I probably escaped the scolding that time.
Whether it was just after school, or in the summer time, mostly Carol would turn us out in the yard. We had a jungle gym where we got pretty good at tricks. We found this so entertaining that we thought others might pay to see us do gymnastics. A couple of us would walk to a little market and buy penny candy while the others went up and down the neighborhood soliciting an audience. We would charge a penny to see the show and sell the candy that we had purchased at the store for two for a penny, for one penny each. We didn’t make much, but it was great fun.
We also had the typical little kid businesses such as lemonade stands. We thought we were quite the entrepreneurs, not realizing that we were practically giving away the family’s treasured supply of sugar.
Once we got on a roll, we began having talent shows for the neighborhood. All of us fancied ourselves great singers and dancers, so we would gather up all the stray kids in the neighborhood and as many parents as we could and hold a talent show. We mostly wanted the chance to show off. My favorite song contribution was “Que Sera, Sera, “ which I belted out to our little captive audiences week after week. I don’t remember being good at any other song. Sometimes a group of we sisters would sing together, usually hymns. All pretty entertaining, at least for us, and Carol like it because it helped keep us out of some trouble.
We did have some evening games we would play in our front yard or someone else’s close by. Postman and Spin the Bottle were great favorites. There was also Truth or Dare. Most of these games were centered around having to kiss someone, which appealed to us more as we got older. What probably spared us from inappropriate attachments and intimacies was that we were pretty much all friends in the neighborhood. No love matches as I remember.
Watch for the next installment