Saturday, January 24, 2015


By Beatrice M. Hanson

Sometimes I sit and reminisce of the good old days and sights I miss.
I think of the hot summer days: of the iceman’s truck in the dark alleyways, the children following behind like puppy dogs to snitch a sliver of ice, then hide; the cement so hot you could fry an egg, would make the tinkle of ice sound like champagne to your head.
A parade of salesmen at your door with worn suitcases of wares for the housewife to explore. Brushes, perhaps a curtain of lace, or creams and lotions for milady’s face.
A perennial caller of books to sell with thinning hair and schoolboy smile, who depended on you’re subscription to attend school in good style.
The clapper-de-clap of horses hooves brought the bakery wagon into view. When its good natured driver called a halt, women and children lined up on the walk to look at the pastries oiled high on the shelves. For a small coin you could choose for yourself.
Children of all ages would stop in their play when the rag man’s shrill voice was heard to say: “Any rags? Any rags? Any rags? Any bones, any bottles for sale? One cent a pound by the weight of my scale.”
The open trolley swaying past with the uniformed conductor standing back to feed his coin belt nickel fares, or stopping to chat with friendly pairs.
For mystery and intrigue of faraway places came the mournful midnight whistle of a passenger train, its windows outlining a silhouette of faces as it snaked its way to a dark destination.
I think of all these things, and many more, that have left this age to return no more.
Well, I have a right to feel forlorn for this was the era in which I was born.