“I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.” 

The morning is rainy and dark. The wind is strong enough to blow even the heaviest limbs. It is the sort of day to stay close to hearth and home. It is a cozies and slippers sort of day.

Last night the storm woke me. I could hear the wind blowing and the rain on the roof. I listened for a little while then fell back to sleep.

I remember when a Carroll’s opened up in my hometown. Fifteen cent burgers were revolutionary. The parking lot became a Saturday hang-out spot. Kids were all over the place. Cars filled all the spaces.

On school nights, the hang out spot was the library. All the tables and chairs were filled with kids pretending they were there to do homework. The librarians were on alert. They threatened to make even the whisperers leave.

My town had both a Grant’s and a Woolworth’s. I liked the Woolworth’s more. It had a candy section, balsa airplanes, Golden books, comic books and inexpensive toys. I wandered the aisles feeing rich with my fifty cents allowance.

Santoro’s subs were just down the street from my elementary school. About once a month my mother would give us enough money to buy a sub, chips and a small drink. I remember how the shop smelled of onions and tomatoes. The menu was huge and was hung on the wall, but I didn’t need it. On Fridays, meatless days, I’d order a tuna sub with pickles and hot peppers. On other days, it was an Italian sub, also with pickles and hot peppers. If it was a nice day, I’d walk to the town hall, sit on a bench and eat my lunch. If it was cold or rainy, I’d stand at the lunch counter and eat. I loved the subs, but the best part of it all was leaving school for just a little while.

I had a diary, a Christmas present one year. The cover was pink plastic with an illustration of a teen age girl talking on the phone on the front cover. It also had a lock and key. I’d write just about every day and lock it when I was done. I hid the key. Looking back on this, I chuckle a little. I was ten or eleven. Nothing in my life needed hiding behind a lock and key. Little has changed since then.

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6 Comments on ““I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.” ”

  1. Bob Says:

    Hi Kat,

    Today the sky is sunny with a predicted high in the mid 90s. Although this weekend is considered the unofficial start of summer, we have had hot weather most of the month of May and little rain.

    When I was a kid my friends and I hung out at a local pizzeria in Queens NY. In those days, New York style pizza was not even thought of in Texas. In Dallas we had Pizza Hut and Shaky’s, both of which were terrible. Now, every style of pizza is available everywhere in the DFW Metroplex. The beauty of immigrants is diversity.

    I started writing down my thoughts daily on my iPad when I was furloughed in the spring of 2020. I started writing down memories because I was starting to have problems remembering the names of the people who were important during certain events in my life and in my career. Now that I’m back working I have less time to reminisce about the past.

    When I bought my first computer in 1985, I was delighted to discover a simple spell checker. Spelling was never my strong point, nor was grammar. Because I’m a south paw, my hand writing is difficult for even me to decipher after even a few minutes. :-). One program I bought early on was a touch typing program. Learning to type has also been a godsend in both my work life and in my personal writing. While in high school I was too stupid not to take a typing class, because I thought only girls took typing. How stupid could I have been? What better way is there to meet girls than taking an all girls class? I was a late bloomer in that department. 🙁

    • katry Says:

      Hi Bob,
      I didn’t go out so I don’t know if the usual tourist horde came down. Rain was predicted for today so it wasn’t a surprise. It stayed in the mid 60’s despite the clouds and rain.

      My hometown had the China Moon, the only ethnic restaurant in town. Now there are Italian, Asian, Thai and even an Indian restaurant. I don’t think the town residents are all that diverse I think peoples’ comfort zones around food have expanded.

      I seem to remember my past more and more while I forget what I want in the kitchen by the time I get there. I write more lists or use mnemonics to help me remember things like grocery lists.

      I’m a good speller and was an English teacher when I started my career so I know grammar. The guidance counselor wouldn’t let me take typing. He said it was in the business track, not the college track where I was. Much later, when I worked at that high school, typing was a mandatory course for all freshmen. It was called key boarding by then. I am still not a good typist.

      • Bob Says:

        My memory for common things is still okay. I just can’t remember the names of people who influenced or entered my work life. When having lunch with my coworker, we will describe a former colleague as to his height, his size, and in which program that he taught, but we will stumble around like mental drunkards trying to recall his name. I began listing those we knew who have passed on so that we can eliminate that person who’s still alive from our guessing game. At least we think they may be still alive.

      • katry Says:

        Common things sometimes escape me at the moment but then they jump into my head. My mind does the same thing, describing what I want to remember and I usually do.

  2. Birgit Says:

    African greetings from our International Festival, after music from Morroco I’m just listening to Ghanaian Highlife, Santrofi, 8 musicians from Accra. It’s fun. No African food for me today, maybe tomorrow.

    • katry Says:

      Birgit,
      I am envious!! The I got to Ghana, highlife was the most popular music. It was far slower than today’s highlife. E.T. Mensah is one of the most well known highlife musicians whose music I easily recognize. Enjoy the food!!!!!


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