My folks decided I was old enough to ride my bike to town. Sometimes I would ride to my grandparent’s house. They lived about 2 miles from us. Sometimes I would ride to Bernie’s house. Bernie was my best friend for many of my growing-up years. Almost every day during swim season I would ride to the pool by the high school to spend the afternoon with my friends.
No matter where I was going I always headed out in the same direction. I would go down our street, across the railroad, and continue towards town on 7th Street. I felt so grown up on my bike. I was glad to have the independence riding my bike gave me. It allowed me to go to town and do things like the kids who lived in town. One of my favorite stops was the Sav-Mor grocery store. I loved to stop at the grocery store after swimming. I would swim with Bernie and other friends for hours during hot summer days. We’d be famished when we left the pool. Mom and dad gave me $.25 a week for treats. I’d spend $.05 a day on candy bars at the grocery store. The candy bars I bought weren’t Hershey’s or a big name but… they were 2 for a nickel.
I loved the feeling of going fast on my bicycle. I loved to feel my hair blowing in the wind. In fact, I loved everything about my rides to town except Lucy. Dorothy and Neale Johnson lived at the end of our road right before the railroad. They owned Lucy!Lucy was a German Shepherd. The picture above is how everyone else saw Lucy. The picture below is how I saw Lucy. When I’d get close to her house she would start barking at me. She’d show me her teeth and bite at my ankles.
Many times Dorothy told me Lucy wouldn’t bite but I never did believe her. I absolutely hated that dog and I hated going down to that end of the street. I had to pass Lucy going to town and again coming home. I would feel such relief when I passed Lucy’s house and my house was in sight. Many times I’d go a longer way crossing the railroad at Service Road and coming back up Sante Fe to avoid Lucy. The longer route added two miles each way to my trip. I hated Lucy for the extra distance too!