Today’s prompt for #JusJoJan the 14th and Stream of Consciousness Saturday is: “once upon a time.” Start your post with “Once upon a time,” then write whatever comes to you, whether it be fact or fiction. Have fun!
Once upon a time we didn’t have phones. Or even TVs. Computers were barely imaginable by the average person. In the 1960s, we had a party line and a phone that sat on a table with a chord. We knew the important numbers by heart. There were three TV stations in black and white. And we thought it was pretty cool.
Lassie and Captain Kangaroo were my favorite shows when I was barely walking and later in kindergarten. Except in kindergarten when we were stationed on the Argentia Naval Base in Newfoundland, Canada. There was only one TV station, and a lot of French was spoken. When my dad got orders to go to Artentia (pronounced Argencia) mom thought he said Argentina. For a city girl from Washington DC, my mom found Newfoundland remote, a bit boring, and of course, cold.
Cold reminds me of the “Cold War” that was going on then. It seemed like everyone was talking about The Russians. I must have picked up on the tension and said, “I hate the Russians.” My dad stopped what he was doing, probably spit polishing his boots, and said, “Honey, you shouldn’t hate the Russians. You should feel sorry for them.”
That was one of the things my dad said that stuck with me. Like “Nothing is impossible” when I was 13.
Don’t hate. and Anything is possible.
Well, mom made the best of being in the frozen wilderness by making friends with the other military wives. The men used to play pinocle. I remember going sledding down a hill out back and that there were wolves howling at night. We used to go on picnics and go out to see the blue icebergs. I would have appreciated the remote location more if I had been older.
Stepping out of the stream, or maybe the stream took me there, I looked up Argentia to make sure I was spelling it right. The base was decommissioned in 1973 and the land returned to the Canadian/Newfoundland government.
One of my favorite photos of that time and place was this picnic photo. I’m wearing saddle shoes.
Mom must be wearing Dad’s jacket. Probably a Marine Corps jacket of some kind because it’s red. But that’s just a guess. We went on a lot of family picnics when I was a kid. Why don’t we do that anymore? I wonder what lead me to write about this time and place which I tend to romanticize. These are some of my earliest memories.
And then there’s this nostalgic Moody Blues song and video about remembering an old romance.
More recent memories include the residents of Blueberry Lane Farm Animal Sanctuary where I prepare and serve lunch on Thursdays. Jake, the sheep had a peculiar way of smelling something interesting in the air. Once upon a time, most of these animals were abused or neglected. Now they are living their best lives. Ed, the big rooster in the third gallery picture, had been confined at county animal services (near barking dogs) and had attacked a woman to the point of her needing hospital care. Now, Ed has learned he can trust Debbie and the caretakers at the sanctuary.
Stream of Consciousness Saturday is hosted by author, Linda G. Hill.
For more streams and details, visit Linda HERE.