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Hand Brakes

by PamFord Davis  
5/20/2009 / Family

At times in our lives some things just seem to be out of reach, meant for somebody else; we dream they could be for us. As a child you may have wanted a pony, or a go cart. Maybe your eye had been on a ballet dress. Did you ask for it at Christmas or just hide it way in your daydreams?

This is a story about an experience I had as a young girl. First I need to share memories about an aunt and uncle. They owned and operated a small town store, "Rices Grocery." They were parents of two adopted daughters and lived in a big beautiful brick home connected to the grocery store.

Our home was only a few miles away and most of our families supplies were purchased there. My Uncle Alex would work with a wide grin wearing a mans clean white apron. I watched him fascinated as he cut or ground fresh meats and then wrapped them in white paper secured with twine.

A favorite place for all children is the candy counter. My Uncle Alex or Aunt Dorothy would patiently wait as we each made our choice from bubble gum, root beer barrels, licorice, peppermints, fireballs, jawbreakers, tootsie rolls, or maybe a big candy bar. With a dime or a quarter that was a major decision.

At Christmas time there were toys for sale that we would add to our wish lists. Two that I remember were a "Smokey The Bear" teddy bear and a large doll that I did get and named "Nanette." She looked like an actress Nanette Fabaret, who years later would have the role of Marys' mother on "The Mary Tyler Moore Show."

My aunt was a school teacher and helped in the store when she was not teaching. I liked the occasions when I had a chance to visit with them. One time she called and asked if I could come to spend the night. Another girl was going to be in their home and she wanted me to keep her company. That was a special treat!

I remember very little about our playing together except for bicycle rides. Back at home with five children we owned only second hand bikes, that Dad had lovingly repaired and painted for us. While at my aunt and uncles I rode a bike owned by my cousin, Martha. It was an English style with hand breaks.

Riding it was wonderful; the thin rimmed tires seemed to glide over the driveway. The hand breaks were a luxury I had never known! After that visit I wanted an English bike of my own. That dream was never realized.

As I think about that disappointment today I think maybe that was a good thing. If I had been able to get one, it would have been exciting for a short time. Then as the newness wore off, I'd be looking for fun someplace else. None of our toys can fully satisfy us. Only God can do that.

Devotionals are her first love in writing. Published articles in Mature Living Magazine, Devotions for the Deaf, The Secret Place, Light from the Word, Coosa Journal, With God Daily, Mary Hollingsworth's The One Year Devotional of Joy and Laughter.

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