When Jimmy was five, he got in the car with Mom and Dad and they went for a ride. Jimmy was worried when they drove through the little town with all the broken buildings. Little boys and girls like him had no pants on and were going wee-wee in the ditch. Why didn’t their Moms and Dads give them clothes?
When Jimmy was five, Mom and Dad took him to Sevilla. They walked and walked and walked through museums and up and down streets until his feet were really sore.
When Jimmy was five, Dad dressed him up in a costume with a short blue cape with glitter on it and a black bolero hat. They went to something called a Fiesta which was a big, big party all over the city. Dad wanted to take Jimmy’s picture with two older Spanish girls, but he was too shy.
When Jimmy was five, Dad took him outside one night and showed him the stars in the sky. Then he pointed to something bright in the sky and said it was Sputnik. Sputnik was something people had put in the sky by launching it on a rocket. Dad said someday, rockets would take people into space, too.
When Jimmy was five, Mom did the laundry by scrubbing it in a big tub and then putting it through wringers, which she worked with a crank to get most of the water out. Then she hung the clothes out to dry on a rope strung between two poles using big wooden pins. When the wind and sun dried the clothes, they felt all rough and stiff.
When Jimmy was five, Mom and Dad took him to the beach. Near the beach were something called Roman ruins. The Romans lived a long time ago and built all kinds of stuff, but that was so long ago that it all fell apart. At the beach, Dad had a big inner tube from a wheel of an airplane. He pulled it into the ocean, sat in it, and put Jimmy in his lap. Then Dad used his arms to row them out into the water. It was fun, but Jimmy wondered if there were any sharks around.
When Jimmy was five, Dad barbecued outside, but the barbecue sauce burned on the chicken making it black. Dad trimmed rose bushes and took pictures of Jimmy with a movie camera he won in a contest.
At Christmas time, instead of Santa Claus, one of the Three Kings that visited baby Jesus rode around the neighborhood in a fancy coach pulled by a horse. The King wore robes and a crown and Jimmy got his picture taken with him. Mom and Dad took Jimmy to the base’s PX where he got his picture taken with Santa Claus, too.
When Jimmy was five, he had a cowboy hat and a cap gun. He liked to take the caps and rub them on the sidewalk until they popped. The smoke smelled good but sometimes he burned his fingers a little.
When Jimmy was going to turn six, Mom and Dad took him on an airplane. They were going to fly back home to America. He’d get to see his Grandpa and all his Aunts and Uncles again. It was fun being five, but six was going to be fun, too.
I wrote this for Tale Weaver – #173 – May 31st – Days Of Old hosted at Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie. Today, we’re supposed to weave a tale around something from days of old. Ideally, we go back before personal computers, telephones, televisions, and such.
I’m not quite that old. We had a television set before I was five, but then, my Dad, who was in the Air Force, was stationed in Spain to a base near Seville and we didn’t have a television. We lived there for three years, and right around age five, all those things I remember happened.
That was all nearly sixty years ago, so I can’t say how accurately I remember things, but I do recall a very impoverished village where the kids urinated in an open ditch. All that other stuff happened as well. As I was writing, it occurred to me that most of my memories of my parents from that time were of my Dad. I suppose that’s the age where little boys are very impressed with their Dads.
Sometime around my sixth birthday, we got on a plane and flew back to America.