BOY IN A BRICK VILLAGE PART II
© 2010 BY David Wainland
Part two of my first chapter/prologue and an edited repost from 1/08
As I get older, and my past flows deeper into the abyss of lost consciousness, I find myself longing for the times of my youth. My childhood was a simple time in a less threatening world.
Our apartment was tiny by today’s standards, one bedroom, a living room and kitchen. You could enter through a narrow hallway that held my mother’s sewing machine and a telephone table with a black Bakelite rotary phone. Then turn right, past the dumbwaiter on the left, the kitchen on the right and through opened doors to the living room.
My parents slept in that room on a high-rise that also served as a couch in the day and a bed at night. We spent our home life in that parlor, sitting around a console radio located between the two windows fronting Walton Avenue.
The Wainlands were a poor family, but as a child, I was completely unaware of this and existed on love and nurturing.
I played outside on the street without supervision, rode subways at ten years old and hustled sodas for the big-guys who had a never-ending stickball game going on in the schoolyard across the street.
My brother, five years my junior, tagged along behind me and on occasions I split my take, the money earned form the deposits on the bottle with him, two cents on a Coke and five cents on the larger bottles. When we had accumulated twenty-eight pennies, we would have enough for two admissions to the Jerome Avenue movie theater and if we managed to scrounge up another dime, we could get two Hershey bars.
It was a wonderful time in The Bronx for kids. We lived on the sidewalks and in the gutters where we played a myriad of games lost in time to the generation that exists today, marbles, pitching pennies, Potsy, Johnny on the pony and the king of all games, Ring-a-Levio.
In my sleep, I often dream of those days with a quiet yearning.