I was reminded of a childhood story as I was driving down South Roosevelt Blvd known as A1A. My Dad, a kid in a big body, thought up great ways to make "work" aka chores fun. There is a "Bridle Path" (
named as such since this was a place to ride horses long ago) out on the south side of the Key West. It is two rows of coconut palms planted after WWI by the Veterans in a Make-work project called the WPA, so those trees are pretty old. Many of my baby pictures have them in the background.
Art and I were sitting on the sea wall watching the sunset and I strolled across
A1A and snapped a few pics, as fond memories swirled in my mind. I was remembering when Daddy had all 4 of us children help him soap down the station wagon, a Woody, at home and when rinsing it promised a trip to the beach. Of course, there was always more to it than that. When we parked the car in the shade of the Bridle Path palms across from the beach, he taught us his version of the Art of the "Wax on Wax off" routine. He let us draw things all over the car with the wax and fill in the spaces like we were painting the car, and I just loved that part. Then we "waxed off" and the 5 of us made great time at that. Polishing done, the rest of the day was playing in the sea across the street!
Sometimes, Daddy would have us scurry under the palms collecting bottles for his home-brew while Mom and little Sis back home built a fire for water to sterilize them. The three of us older kids had loads of fun riding on the hood of the car as Dad drove very slow while we were on the lookout. We'd jump off the side and run for the brown and clear glass quart bottles and put them in the tailgate of our Woody where Dad had two big wash tubs waiting for our deposits.
Running along looking in the bushes and jumping back on the hood was such fun, and as a well trained team, we made pretty quick work of filling the tubs.
Back home, we made quite the production line to clean the bottles we found. We put a rag on a coat hanger and set about scrubbing the insides. After inspection they went into boiling water. When the brew was finished there would be another production line, as we got to do the bottling too! But no tasting come to think of it. Phooey!
Living where I grew up holds special times for me to reflect back on the lessons of one of my best teachers, my Daddy. These childhood memories speak to me and still remind me to turn my work in to play and the Dolphin sure help with that!