The events I'll be talking about took place in 1975. I can hardly believe that was forty-one years ago.
October 31st fell on a Friday that year. I remember that, but I did double check to be sure before starting this post. I remember that my mom took the day off from work to see my brother and I in the parade we had at school.
After school, I had football practice. When practice was finished, our coach got a phone call from the father of one of our players. This gentleman was the one who always made certain that every kid got home safely. He was running behind schedule and wanted those of us who needed a ride to know that.
Someone, I don't remember who, then got the idea that we should go trick or treating while we waited. So, we did. I paired up with my friend Harry. We put the candy in our helmets. I also remember that we knocked on one door and were very pleasantly surprised to find someone we knew.
It was our former school nurse, who had retired just a few months earlier. She invited us in and we talked for a little while.Would that happen today? Or would our current social climate cause that wonderful lady to reconsider and not make the offer to come in?
I have no idea.
Getting back to the story, when we were all back at the practice field, the dad was waiting for us and was not at all upset about having to wait.
Normally, he would drop me off right in front of our trailer but that evening, he asked if I felt okay walking the last little bit. I told him that was okay with me.
So, there I am, walking down Kellum Road in Choconut Center, Pennsylvania with a helmet full of candy. I see a car coming. It was my dad. He stopped to talk to me, of course, and told me he was going to the stock car races. The track in question, Five Mile Point, was having its end of season event.
For the modified class, a one hundred lap feature. Naturally, I asked if I could go. My dad said no, and that mom and my brother were waiting for me to get home so Mark and I could go trick or treating. Being the quick thinker I was even at that age, I told him that I had already done that.
Now, keep in mind a few things. One, dad was a parent who when he wanted time to himself, made every effort to get it. Two, taking just me and not my brother to the races would have been unfair and upset my brother. Three, though it was not a school night, it was very chilly outside that night.
So chilly that dad wound up leaving early. If it was too cold for a man who had served at an Air Force base in Alaska, it definitely would have been too cold for me.
Forty-one years have passed since that day. The last year I went trick or treating was 1979, when I was thirteen.
On an unrelated but very important note, I wish to mention that today is the ninth anniversary of my grandmother's death at the age of 92. Miss you, Grandma.