Jack’s Mid-Missouri Memory: Getting Used to Things
Getting used to things
We get used to things as we grow up, and when they are gone, we miss them more than we thought we would. They then become part of our lost past. Some of these things were such a part of our daily lives back then we hardly noticed them until they were gone. I thought of this after the Jenny Jaynes Stadium came down adding one more thing from the days of my youth, that is now gone forever. I never played football in the stadium because I joined the navy and was not here to do so the final two-years of highschool. At 122 pounds soaking wet I would have been a bench warmer anyway, but it is still something that has gone from those growing up days. There are other for granted things gone too, for instance the whistle that used to blow at the old Missouri Pacific Shops several times a day. That noon whistle brought us home for dinner, and the five o’clock whistle told us our fathers would soon be home, after a hard day on the job. That whistle was always there, and we could set our clocks by it, because it was railroad time. You could hear the whistle all over Sedalia, even if you were inside your house. For those of us who lived just a few blocks away it was too loud sometimes, but we counted on it as much as we do our watches now. It was something a lot of people used to plan their meals around. It could have been a signal like the bell for Pavlov’s Dog that parents could count on to bring us kids home for lunch and dinner. Now that it is silent I can imagine a lot of kids being late for mealtime. What I miss most of course is the old friends from the neighborhood that I grew up with, and sometime I think I can still hear their young voices ringing in my ears. At those times I see their faces as fresh in my memory as they are in pictures from those childhood days. I can hear them call me out to play those games kids no longer play, like hide and seek, capture the flag, or marbles. I can also hear those distinctive voices of my mother, grandmother and sister whispering in my ear sometime, and that reminds me how much I still miss them after all these years since they went away. I guess while I can get used to losing structures, and background noises, I will never do so with those voices that filled my life back then.