Childhood experiences...


There are many Amish and Mennonite's here in Indiana and I run into them at the Wal-Mart.  I have a sort of fear of the Amish and Mennonite's. It goes back to a bad childhood experience.

As a kid we lived next door to this airforce pilot who was married to a Mennonite. She dressed plainly, her hair in a very long braid, her face was always serious and drawn. The kids were fun when we played outside but forget talk of Happy Days, The Fonz, Leather Tuscadero or American Bandstand. These were my favorite topics of conversation at the time. Their toys were all handmade and we weren't allowed to bring our toys over. These kids were always eating maple sugar candy and licorice. We liked the licorice and would take it when offered but they never took anything we offered them.  We always felt slighted that that never wanted our Kool-Aid or Cracker Jacks when offered.

One day we were all playing in their bathroom and I emphasize all. They started throwing those colored bath oil balls at each other and several hit the wall and oozed out red and blue bath oil.  My brother and I laughed at the way they would hit and splatter. The kids went and told their mother about the stained white wall and she came in and gave my brother and I the scariest, dirtiest look like she wanted to tear us apart. She then picked up my brother from the waist and took my hand in a tight squeeze and said we were not allowed to play with her children again and basically threw us out of her house. Standing on their front lawn in a state of shock, feeling terribly wronged and with my little brother in tears I got fired up and threw a rock aiming it at their window. It was really the first time I can recall being seriously angry.  It bounced off the corner of the frame but still made a loud noise. She came out angry and we ran home. We told our parents about it with the idea that maybe they'd march next door and take care of things. They calmly said to stay out of trouble, don't go over so often and leave them alone.

For several weeks we played in our own backyard not missing our neighbors at all. Then one day both the girl and boy showed up with shaved heads at our door. They were always getting lice and finally had to resort to extreme measures. To this day my mother is proud we never had a bout with it.  I remember hearing them say that their mother said it was okay for us to all play together agin. We told our mother we'd be next door playing. She came to the door and took one look at them and said sorry but we were unavailable and would not be able to play with them for awhile. I watched them walk away looking sort of unhappy and that pleased me.

1 Comments:

Blogger ♥ w o o l f ♥ said...

gripping, how memories stick with us and how we do reflect upon them, sometimes.
i don't know so much about extreme religion, which is what i call strong catholic, or bible, beliefs, or whatever. i do like amish stark design, but mixed with other design, i guess.
i'm straying.
happy days, hey? oh la la...
n♥

Thursday, August 11, 2011  

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