Driveways were the theme of the neighborhood that year. Once one house got slick and paved, everyone began hating their crummy stones and dirt. I don't remember who was first, but I know we were not going to be outdone.
One day at the crack of dawn, the monster machines rumbled in. They tore. They dug. They dumped ton after ton of crushed stone for a foundation. No, it wasn't a new airport. They built driveways to last back then.
I was five. Of course, I wanted to see what was going on, but I was a bit scared too. Guys with cigars and black, greasy fingers. They shouted over the straining engines.
See me sitting out on the blanket by the front walk?
Then, it happened. One of them took an interest in me.
Come on, little man. We'll show you how it's done.
(BTW, why do they call it a steam roller when we're at least seventy years from the last puff of steam?)
Yup, let the kid drive it!
Come on, guys. I may have been five, but I wasn't an idiot. I knew it was ludicrous. I knew I wasn't really driving the thing.
When the instructions called for gullible, you called the boy across the street. I'm sure he was looking out his window about now. He was thinking, man oh man oh man. Why is he so LUCKY?
Just get me off this thing!
*Disclaimer: This may be an exaggeration of my five-year-old vocabulary. However, the kid did have to blow out the candles at my birthday party. Come on!)
(The "Little Windows" Series: A while back, I transferred our old Super 8 home movies onto VHS. Now I'm moving those to DVD. They're an odd record of the past. More vibrant than photos, but still distant and imperfect. I thought it might be fun to share some of these "little windows" into my past.)