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Sussie Due

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The Streetlight
By Sussie Due
Thursday, November 06, 2003

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Memories of Childhood.

This is short. I will just post it here.

My adoptive mother came from a very poor family of the Ozarks. So, when she married money, it "went to her head" so to speak. If anything was built or bought for mother, it was the biggest, or the best, or both. Therefore, the fact that we had a four story, 17-room house, on a corner lot, in a town the size of a postage stamp, did not surprise anyone. The bedrooms were on the top level. Mine faced the streetlight, and its yellow glow shone boldly at night. Even with the shades drawn, it still lit up the room bright enough that you could almost read a book by it. I hated that light. Except in the winter when it was snowing.

Back in my childhood, there was no such question of "if" it would snow. The main questions were "how soon" and "for how long". As is a rule the ground was covered by Thanksgiving and did not rear its head, with the exception of the occasional January thaw, until March or so. It wasn't unusual for us to have a constant 18 inches or more on the ground. The city would use a Grader to pile the snow up into a long strip in the center of the streets. Then a Scoop (front-end loader) would place this into dump trucks, which would deposit it in a large empty lot somewhere in town. This lot full of snow had a two-fold purpose for the kids of our small town. The first being that within a week, the piles looked like Swiss cheese from the tunnels dug and "forts" made. The second being that it meant we usually had snow to play in clear into the month of May and, on rare occasions, June.

Nightly routine for me was to bathe, say my prayers, kiss my parents goodnight, pull the shades, turn my back to the window, and go to sleep. This ritual was only broken in the winter months, and only when it was snowing. It was on these nights the shade got a rest as I lay there looking out my large bedroom window; watching the snowflakes twinkle against the soft yellow light of that blessed streetlight.

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