My grand-daughter Georgia announced she was rich. She had two dollars and fifty-five cents. “Grammy GiGi, what can I buy?”

I thought for a moment and realized I didn’t know, but I told her nevertheless, “Many things!”

As my mind will often do, at least for now, :-), I recalled the many times my brother Vern and I would take off on our bikes heading to town with a red wagon tied to the back of his bike. We were on the hunt.

Vern and I were as free as two sun beams in those days, not returning home for hours with never a worry. Our keen eyes sought out any reflection in the sun that just might be a tossed bottle…worth a whopping five cents. Aluminum cans didn’t exist at this point in time. After a few hours of extreme hunting we’d finally pull into our favorite deposit site, Savon Drug Store. We’d cash them in, then head to the glorious candy aisle that stretched, it seemed, for a mile. Without hesitating I would run and pick up my favorites: Lemon Heads, Hot Tamales, and Big Hunk, oh my, all for ten cents. For three!! And they were big too! Vern and I would then decide what to do next: go to the matinee or head for the park pool. Those were such wonder filled days of Elvis Presley movies with great cartoons as extras for twenty-five cents, or, hours of swimming fun for fifty cents. And we didn’t call home to tell our mom what we were doing either. She was taking care of our two little sisters and there just didn’t seem to be any danger to worry about.

Often when Vern and I would begin our trek home we would pull up to a little church that had a plum tree planted on it bearing rich plump plums just for our taking. No one ever seemed to mind if we just laid under the shade of the tree, ate plums and sipped at the water from a near-by hose. (That water was the best…cold and refreshing.)

That little church was a haven and it was free to eat and drink from it. Well, i didn’t mean to take this turn, but I got here anyway. The obvious parallel of working hard searching for bottles, cashing them in, eating our fill of junk and heading off somewhere to have fun versus the free luscious fruit and cold hose water of a sweet little church as we found our way home. I’ll never forget those plums. Those were the days my friends. And all for a lot less than two dollars and fifty-five cents.

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