Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Life Then - The 50's, Part 3

I was walking back from collecting the mail when I heard a wolf whistle. A wolf whistle from next door? The people living next door were friends of my parents and they had 8 children all younger than me. Why would someone from that house whistle. I shrugged it off and went in our house to give my mother the mail. Boys! There was the paper boy that would stop and talk with me before he continued his route, there was the boy that lived across the street and was always asking me if I wanted to go for a ride in his new car, there was the father in the market that brought his son up to meet a 'nice' girl (apparently I was an object lesson for his son), there was the boy that bagged our groceries and talked to me while he worked, and there was the boy that lived across the hill and walked to wherever every day or so and always stopped at our house 'just to talk'. Boys were everywhere, and they had found me about a year before I realized that I wanted to be found. But next door! There were no boys my age over there. Perplexing! When I handed my mother the mail I mentioned the wolf whistle and my confusion over who the whistler could have been. She said, "Oh that must have been Denny. He is home on leave." Then her attention was taken by the mail. I left the room even more perplexed. Denny? He wasn't a boy. He had graduated from high school and entered the Marines. I could hardly even remember what he looked like. He was older and we never paid much attention to one another. I'd have to look over that way when I went outside. Maybe I could get a glimpse of him. In the meantime, my mother called to me that the mail contained a letter from the foundation that had paid for all of my surgery. "They want an update on your condition and a picture for their files" she said. That place buried inside me that dealt with the fear flared it's head, "They 're interested in me again!", but mom had promised me I didn't have to have any more surgery so I tried to ignore the implications of a letter from 'them' and went back to thinking about the whistle from next door. I'm going to digress a bit here, but bear with me. My mother and father were, as I found out later, different from most of my friends parents. My mom and dad werevery much in love, and they were open about their sexuality. Everything was explained to us in an open and honest way and if we watched how they interacted with one another we could see a prime example of what a happy sex life brought to a marriage, but my sister and I were also taught the mantra of the time. "Good" girls didn't, and if they did the boy that they 'did' with wouldn't have any respect for them. You had to stay a virgin until you got married. You could tell by the way that they treated one another that sex must be fun, but fun had to wait for marriage. Now back to the whistle. I called a girl friend and told her about the whistle and she said that she would be right over. She told me to meet her on the sidewalk in front of the house and we could sit on the lawn and talk this exciting event over. I did as instructed and while we were standing there another whistle floated out of the house. This time the whistle had barely floated over to us when a person walked out of the house and came over to where we were standing. This boy wasn't a boy. He was a man! He had to be a least 19. He was tall, blonde, handsome, in uniform, and he was looking right at me. He whistled again and complimented me on how I had grown. He teased us for a bit; asking about school and our social lives. Then he asked me if I would like to go to a rodeo with him. A rodeo? We lived at the beach; where was a rodeo at the beach? This older boy/man was interesting and he had asked ME for a date When I went in the house to ask my mother if I could accept the date I found her answering the letter she had gotten from 'them'. My life of fading into the background so as not to be noticed was changing.

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