Family Home in Chinook

Winter Sundays

Sundays during the winter time werea a real family get together time. This was the only day Dad was ever home. Dad of course had to get up at six even on Sunday because of starting the power plant, but he came back home for breakfast and stayed with us all day on most wintry Sundays.

Dad liked kippered herring, and once in a while (only on Sunday) he would take the lid off the kitchen stove and toast herring for us all. It was a great treat, but the one disadvantage was the strong fish smell that stayed in the house all day. Another problem that I just remembered were the thousand bones each one of those smoked devils contained.

The dining room table was where all homework was done. Each of us three boys had our designated area to work on, and Sunday morning after breakfast was the time to clean up any homework that had been put off from Friday.

Lorne, Keith and Ray in 1944 (14, 15 and 17 years old)

In those days every grade from one to twelve had homework assignments at least three nights a week. I'm pretty sure a teacher who didn't give out plenty of homework wouldn't be around for more than one year.

After our homework was cleaned up we usually started in on one of our many games. Snakes and ladders, tricky sticks, monopoly, croquinole and many others, held our attention until late afternoon, when all the good radio programs started.

Sunday Radio

We now moved from dining room to living room where the big console radio stood next to our overstuffed blue couch, and the big friendly furnace grate threw out a pleasant heat. All three boys lay on the floor and fought quietly for the top position closest to the speaker.

This floor-creeping and elbow-edging, had to be done very surreptitiously, so as not to bring the ire of Dad down on us, for if that happened we would all be sent to the kitchen for fifteen minutes.

We could often argue with Mother about whose fault it was and talk her into letting us all stay where we were by promising to be good, but Dad didn't want to hear who the culprit was. He would send us to the kitchen without a trial so he could enjoy the program.

Dad's discipline was like that. He drew a line and we knew enough not to cross it unless prepared for the consequences. Only if one of us was not very interested in the program did a problem arise, then we all paid the price.

Television was a thing of the distant future at that time, but radio was a magic device that took you away to the city or jungle and allowed you to soar with the birds or ride to the rescue.

All you had to do was close your eyes and listen as The Lone Ranger Rides Again, or Gang Busters chased the bad guys. Remember the smirking voice of the Shadow? "Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow Knows!" T. V. is great but it can't ever match what the radio with my (eyes closed) imagination could do while lying there on the warm floor in front of that beautiful Philco radio.

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