It was Thanksgiving weekend of 1960.
Just like the mythical Dick, Jane and Sally would visit Grandmother and Grandfather on their farm, I was off for an overnight visit with mine in their apartment in Queens, NY.
Back To The Future
Because my grandparents still lived in the same brick, Art-Deco-Moderne apartment house that my father grew up in, by the simple act of walking through the graceful arched entrance way of the once fashionable Buckingham Arms Apartments, I was entering the world of my father’s youth.
Early the next morning, it wasn’t the crowing of a rooster that woke me , but the hiss of the steam heat coming up from the radiator, its old rickety pipes rattling and knocking like some arthritic ghost of Christmas past, drowning out the roar of the Electrolux, sucking up nonexistent dust.
In the end it was the pungent scent of Parsons Ammonia assaulting my nose that was my final wake up call. It didn’t matter that it was a Sunday, or that it was November, with feather duster firmly in one hand, a mop in the other, it was always spring cleaning for Nana Rose whose motto was- “the only way to keep a house clean was to make sure it never got dirty.”
Shaking the sleep from my eyes, I peeked out the window but the dismal view of an air shaft had a funereal gloom about it, as far from a pastoral view of meadows as you could imagine. The close proximity of a neighboring building blocked the bedroom window of whatever sunlight there may have been, giving little clue whether it was morning or still night.
As the unfamiliar light washed over me, my eyes became adjusted to the familiar surroundings. The same room where only just last night my family had nibbled on mounds of chopped liver and drank sparkling cut crystal glasses of Canadian Club and Cott’s Cream Soda, had, before being re-commissioned as a den, been the bedroom where my father and uncle slept as boys, and where now once again it was transformed into a bedroom where I had spent the night.
That my father had spent so much of his time cloistered in this cheerless, view-less room, building his balsa airplanes, reading The Hardy Boys, and listening to The Shadow on his red Bakelite radio, made me a little sad.
Please watch for Little Sally’s Big Visit With her Grandparents Pt III and Pt IV
Copyright (©) 20012 Sally Edelstein All Rights Reserved -Excerpt From Defrosting The Cold War:Fallout From My Nuclear family
- Little Sally’s Big Visit With Her Grandparents (envisioningtheamericandream.wordpress.com)
- Little Sally’s Big Visit With Her Grandpartents Pt III (envisioningtheamericandream.wordpress.com)
- Little Sally’s Big Visit With Her Grandparents Pt IV- Radio Daze (envisioningtheamericandream.wordpress.com)