Summer’s coming. Time to head to the Sycamore diner in Bethel CT. Retro cars in parking lot, Hot dogs… summer. They used to have “car hops” I wondered if they still do, but only on Friday or Saturday night. This place is just a classic. Whether we walked or got a ride. It was one of those places where we’d meet to grab a burger after a game or after a movie. Seems like I lost touch with that part of my life sometimes. Those places are just hard to come by any more. Saw a picture in the Rutland Herald, Vermont today as the back hoe tore down a sign from the MIdway Diner. I guess there’s still hope becasue there’s an actual drive up A&W Root Beer joint outside of MIddlebury VT. (Not in a Mall… shocking huh ? ) Who remembers A&W ?, raise you hand or better yet comment… do kids even still raise their hands ?
Every year as spring arrives I find myself thinking about about growing up in Connecticut. There we so many kids living in my neighborhood in Danbury, CT, way outside of town, near West Redding. Once the weather changed we couldn’t wait to get out for the day… ALL day. We could hold a full 9 on 9 baseball game with a crew on the bench or dugout. When the weekend would come there’d be as many as 25 kids all on bicycles. Some riding on the handle bars, some riding double, while the other guy stood up and peddled. At times we must have looked like Hell’s Angels. Today whenever we visit my folks my son challenges me to list the kids I played with so many years ago… so here it goes in order of the front of the neighborhood to the back. Jimmy, Jamie, Susan, Andrew, Jimbo, Nubins, Peter, Bill, Bob, Kevin and Matt, Peter, Gregg, Diane, Vinny, Denis, Jimmy and Jani, Joey, Earl (that was me), Scott, Bobby, Peter, CIndy.. yea that looks like the Brady bunch but it’s true. My memory is some what faded and I can think of 5 more guys whose names I cannot recall. We’d show up at the volunteer firehouse ball field in West Redding, and it was game on. I remember the “big” guys crushing the ball into an un-mowed outfield, and scrambling to find it in the deep grass. On the way home we’d all stop at the West Redding General Store, by the railroad tracks for a Nehi Grape soda and some chips. As the seasons changed, it didn’t matter, we had full sides for every sport.
Friday night in the summer at the Candlewood Roller RInk, not far from the Lake. With roller skates I was nearly 6 foot 10. When the lights went out and the disco ball lit up. It was me my friends and my sneaker skates. I don’t think you could do what we did on skates with roller blades. But I’m biased,