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Monday Memoir- Summer Vibes

Posted by Susan Dickman on Monday, August 14th, 2017 at 8:53pm.

***Before air-conditioning. When we moved into our homestead we brought our wooden ice chest with us.  Every day a horse drawn wagon came down our street. When it stopped, we took a look. A dirty tarpaulin covered the ice inside. The ice monger was expert at cutting a block, gripping with ice tongs and carrying it into our kitchen. The chest was attractive, with beautiful hinges &  tight handles. A big pail went underneath to catch the water as the ice melted. We checked it before it overflowed onto the floor.

 
Summer was pleasant. My folks had storm windows installed, with glass and screens. We switched their positions as the seasons changed. The windows had shades, curtains and draperies.The basement was deep, the floors cool. 
 
My mother's bachelor brother was our music man.  Our Uncle Al would drive his car from Dorchester to our house on Sunday afternoons. He kept my brothers supplied with bugles, cornets, and trumpets. I wanted to blow too, but was told "Girls don't blow." Three stands held their sheet music. Sour notes were bound to happen.  
 
This embarrassed my mother, who would apologize to  passing neighbors. Good or bad, the trumpets' blare came loud and clear through the open windows. "Oh, we don't mind,"  "They're learning! They're getting better!"  they'd respond  enthusiastically. 
 
They did improve! Their music competed with the famous  Radio Priest, Father Coughlin,  on Sunday afternoons. Our Catholic neighbors had their volume on high.   
The hottest days of summer were a period of strife. Father Coughlin's voice, was emphatic, powerful, compared to the spirited sounds of trumpets playing John Philip Sousa's, "Stars and Stripes Forever"! 
 
Larisa Bogach

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