Memories of a magic year

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Somebody mentioned the year 1937. To me, that’s kind of a magical time. Oh, sure I know how it really was, at least for communities like ours: no electricity, outdoor toilets, wood-burning stoves, manpower and mule power, almost no money.
Still, in my mind, it was kind of a magical time.
Well, a lot of things happened in that year.
My brother Jack was born that year … at the very same time our electricity came on. The house was wired and ready. Grandma Boman was at the house, doing what mothers do when their daughter is about to go through that ordeal. Dr. Roberts was there, too. Somewhere, somebody with Alabama Power pulled a switch or hit a button and, voila! A blinding light flashed as those 60-watt bulbs, one in each room, hanging down from the ceiling, came on. Dr. Roberts claimed that Grandma – they didn’t have electricity yet in the upper part of the community – headed for the cellar, and he had a hard time coaxing her to come out.
She’s the one who, when they did get on line, insisted on turning off the Frigidaire  at night to save money.
Shortly after that, we got a Kelvinator Frigidaire (I know), a Silvertone radio and an electric churn. We were electrified!
We also got our first car – well, a 1937 Ford pickup. Daddy got a contract to haul school kids in a custom-built bus body, like a big camper. Some kids went to Oak Hill, one of the little country elementary schools that dotted the country in those days, and some he hauled to the big school in town.
He rigged up a pulley system with which he could, in just  a moment, pull off that school bus bed and put on cotton frames and haul farmers’ cotton to the gin.
And I did my first “plowing” that year. I was 6. Daddy let me run out the middles of some corn rows at laying-by time. Wow! The next year, I’d be going at it full time.
And I started to school that year. More about that next time.
Bob Sanders is a veteran local radio personality, columnist, author and raconteur of note. Last week he observed his 60th anniversary of being on the air with his morning radio show on WAUD.
He can be reached at bobbypsanders@gmail.com.

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