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Yesteryears (standard:non fiction, 993 words)
Author: SarahAdded: Apr 02 2001Views/Reads: 2833/1185Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
Serendipity. Life is full of it. If you know to look for it.


The youngster raced down the steps of the two-story house.  It's
barn-style roof made it appear much larger than the homes on either 
side.  Slinging his belted books over his shoulder, the young boy took 
the stairs two at a time, youthful energy bubbling from his small, wiry 
body.  If you could have looked into his large, hazel eyes you would 
have seen a glimmer of mischief lurking behind his innocent smile. 

Half-way down the street, he stopped to adjust his knee-length socks
which never stayed tucked inside his knickers when he ran.  Wool tweed 
knickers, long black stockings held up by garters that always seemed to 
be too tight or too loose, black high-top, lace-up shoes, white shirts 
and bow ties were standard school attire for boys his age.  Jack hated 
the baggy pants and itchy socks. 

At the corner, he turned right and ran the short side block to the
school yard.  The school and playground took up an entire city block 
with the front of the school facing the residential street Adelaide and 
the rear and playground backing up to State Fair, one of the busy city 
streets that bounded the State Fair Grounds. 

The large playground contained swings and slides in several locations. 
He had no time for play, however.  The first bell was ringing as he 
entered the massive wooden doors on this side of his school, Grayling 
Elementary.  He was seven years old and in the second grade.  The year 
was 1919. 

* * * * * 

The little girl jumped down the steps of the small bungalow-style house
she shared with her mother and father.  Her large, expressive, hazel 
eyes sparkled with enthusiasm and her small slender body seemed charged 
with energy as she bounced her way down the steps, one at a time. 

Her long dark brown hair was parted on the side with a big red bow and
curled in the Shirley Temple ringlets that were a popular style of the 
times.  She was wearing a red, white, and blue gingham dress, smocked 
and gathered in the front, with white collar and cuffs, sewn on her 
mother's new sewing machine.  Red tights and sensible brown Oxfords 
completed her apparel.  The dress was one of many lovingly hand-made by 
her mother. 

At the bottom of the stairs, she began skipping and singing her way down
the street.  Reaching the corner, she turned right and ran the short 
side block to her school, Grayling Elementary.  She was seven years old 
and in the second grade.  The year was 1945. 

* * * * * 

Serendipity.  Life is full of it.  Take our little boy and girl, for
instance.  Each spent almost ten years of his/her childhood on the same 
street albeit twenty-five years intervened.  So what?  The little boy 
became the father of the little girl; that's so what. 

Of course a lot of things happened to the young boy known as little Jack
Barnes between the years 1913 and 1945.  By then he had married and 
fathered a child--the little girl--who he adored almost as much as he 
did her mother.  And in 1945, he was about to become a proud father 
once again, this time of a son. 

His daughter certainly thought it was unusual that she and her parents
lived just a few houses down from her father's childhood home. 
Unfortunately, she didn't learn this until she was grown and long gone 
from her childhood neighborhood. 

As a child living in this community, she had always been especially
drawn to the two-story house a few doors down from her own.  At the 
time, she thought it was because of it's barn-style roof.  Anything 
that looked like a barn or smelled like a farm always drew her 
attention.  That's because her mother's father had a farm in Tennessee 
and every summer they would spend a couple of weeks with him.  She 
loved visiting Grandpa Evans on his farm.  Although he sold the farm 
and moved to town when she was still a little girl, throughout her 
life, the smell of barns and horses and hay would always be to her the 

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