Last night I fell asleep listening to the rain drive against the bedroom window; it was a pleasant sound, a comforting sound that causes me to have a few flashbacks to other rainy nights and days. For instance I can have a vivid memory of a gentle April rain return to me instantly when I think of walking, in my little plastic raincoat, to the church about a block from my childhood home to go to "Bible School" in the evening when a missionary (something I had not heard of before) came to teach at the little church for a week. This was where and when I learned a childrens’ song, "Jesus Loves The Little Children, All the children of the world…red, yellow, black or white, they are precious in His sight….." I can bring up that rainy evening memory and the memories of that week any time I see a rainy day come along, even now. I also flashback to a rainy May 1 when all of us kids delivered MayBaskets to each others’ homes and the custom was to run after the "deliverer-er" and kiss them. I recall running about a block in the falling rain trying to catch my Maybasket friend and I think I did catch him/her because I remember giving someone a very wet kiss…can’t remember if it was a girl or a boy but being I ran so far, it may have been a boy!
Buffaloguy has flashbacks about the day that World War 2 ended. He was only about 6 years old and was sitting in a barber’s chair in the Seattle, Washington area where his family had spent the last year of the war after his Dad was drafted. The barber got the news from the radio and every adult male in the barber shop began to dance, sing, hug each other, and carry on ….and little B.G. was totally confused. He got left in the chair with his half- a- haircut and sat patiently until the Barber came back inside after going out in the street to hug more people and rejoice at the war’s end. It was a great day for all the people who had endured such a time as World War 2 produced in this nation.
When I think of sheet terror, I flash back to a day in early spring when I was less than 4 years old; I had little black rubber boots with red soles which I dearly loved. I loved them so much I was constantly testing them by wading in puddles, melting snow water streams and one day, probably in March when the snow had melted, I decided to walk out into the muddy garden plot. As I walked further out, my feet sank deeper and deeper into miry, sucking mud and eventually both my boots came off as I panicked and began to pull my feet out of the mud. I was struggling to get back to the grassy lawn and my shoes got sucked off next; then my socks, as I cried out in terror for my mama. I cannot recall if she heard my cries..probably not because I definitely remember it was not a warm day and the windows would not have been open. I did get out of the miry pit and onto dry land and someone must have retrieved my boots, shoes and socks…but that part does not flash back….just the part about getting sucked down and loosing all my footwear. This same thing happened to one of my sons many years later but he had a brother with him and the brother came tearing to the house to report it to Grandma who was staying with them at the time. She got her turn in the mud and successfully pulled the grandson to safety but his boots got sucked off also.
The same two sons can flashback about their pocket gopher adventure, some years later when they were elementary school boys and were working each afternoon after arriving home on the school bus, as their dad’s pocket gopher trappers. Every gopher caught in those days got its dead paws clipped off and deposited in an empty peanut butter jar which was kept in the freezer. I can get flashbacks myself about finding those gopher paws when I was searching for a package of frozen food in the same freezer. More than once, I yelled and jumped when I encountered the paws-peanut butter jar. But the true flashback incident occurred when they pulled a gopher out of a hole, caught in the trap but still very much alive, to their surprise. The boy who pulled the trap up got the full impact as the gopher came to life and snarled and snapped at him. He dropped the trap,the gopher and all his dignity, as he whooped and hollered in terror and did a little dance around the gopher mound. His brother, who saw it all, never let him forget it and even drew a very amazing cartoon of the event with a dramatic picture of a monstrous gopher coming up out of the hole, looking very much like "Jaws" which was popular at that time. The monster gopher had a set of teeth just like a shark and was emerging from the hole to attack the brother who was gaping in horror, in the cartoon. It was titled "PAWS" and I wish I had saved it. It was amazing artistry and cleverness for a nine- year old boy.
I can also flashbackd to another time when I was almost too young to remember much of anything but I remember standing in an outhouse, locked inside by my equally young playmate, Eddie. We had been playing farm and I was the "cow" and Eddie put me in the "barn" but then went off and forgot all about the "cow". My mother and Eddie’s mother searched frantically for me when they realized I was missing. Their frantic cries for me were finally answered by my little voice, saying "I am in here!" and they both found me in the old outhouse. My mother pondered later about the consequences if I had been impatient and decided to crawl up on to the outhouse seat where I would surely have fallen down one of the "holes". I feel certain a Guardian Angel was hovering over me that day. I only remember standing by the locked door in the dim little house waiting for Eddie to let me out.
All of us experience flashbacks in one way or another; hopefully all of them are either funny or recall an incident that was memorable—-and it turned out was well as my "cowbarn" flashback did.