Another Christmas Memory
I was around 9 or 10 and oh, did I ever want a two-wheel bicycle.
The problem was, and I'd had this pointed out to me many times, no bicycles could be purchased because of the war. (WWII). The metal was needed for the war effort and bicycles were not being made.
What a surprise on Christmas morning when I came out to discover a shiny new, blue girl's bicycle standing up by the tree.
How could this possibly have happened when it was impossible to buy a new bicycle anywhere?
I didn't count on my dad's expertise at being able to make anything. Yes, that's exactly what happened, he built my bicycle from scratch. I have no idea how he managed to get all the parts, some of the bike was made of pipe (he was a plumber) but he did. Not only did he build my bicycle but he built another for my cousin Barbara who lived a block away.
Learning how to ride the bicycle took me forever. (My cousin was much quicker at it much to my humiliation since she was 11 months younger.)
My poor father held onto the seat and ran alongside me over and over until I finally got the hang of balancing.
After that I rode that bike everywhere--not to school--probably afraid someone might steal it. I rode to my friend's houses. And in the summer, I packed up my basket with books, tablets, pens and pencils and rode around until I found a home with a big tree (Weeping Willow preferred) and parked myself on the lawn in the shade. Sometimes I even packed a lunch.We didn't have any parks close by.
Never did a home owner come out and ask what I was doing.
I was so fortunate to have a dad like mine. Another year he built me a three story doll house and my artist aunt made all the furniture and curtains for the windows.
He also built our first TV with a Heath Kit. We were the first ones in the neighborhood to own a television. We had lots of company to help us watch wrestling, roller derby, Beanie and Cecil, and whatever else was on which wasn't much.
Frankly, for a long time, radio was much more exciting.
Merry Christmas Everyone.