A song comes on the radio and instantly, you’re transported to a different time and place. Which song(s) bring back memories for you and why? Be sure to mention the song, and describe the memory it evokes.
When the song Penny Lane by The Beatles is played I immediately think about sitting at a kitchen table in an upstairs apartment in Shirley, Massachusetts the winter of 66/67. I sat and listened to that song one morning back then. My wife had just prepared breakfast. We were, in a sense living on Penny Lane – we were living on pennies.
Each line of that song reminds me of different aspects of that small New England town, but most importantly of two married kids struggling with meager and cruel realities and only the hope was that things would somehow improve.
Here is my short story for the day:
The Idyllic Place
Luke and his family moved in the valley about the same time Ken and his family did. They lived a mile apart. They always said that’s close enough for anybody to live, especially good friends. Ken always said, “Fences don’t make good neighbors; distance does.”
That’s not to say the families didn’t get together now an then, they did and it was always healthy, happy, and good.
Luke and Ken hunted together. It was as much for safety as it was companionship and friendship. The knew how far and how close to get.
It was fall and they sat on a warm rock overlooking one of their favorite hunting grounds. It was a place where elk seemed to graze in the sweet grass and nibble on the wild black berries.
“I’ve been thinking about moving on,” Ken said.
“Ya don’t like it here?” Luke said.
“Monotony,” Ken said.
“What monotony?” Luke said. “Everyday there’s something new. Every few months the seasons change. We got a river to explore and fish. And what is it they say you never cross the same river twice. You never track a deer or elk the same way twice. We ski in the winter, swim in the summer, plant in the spring, harvest and can in the fall. Are you getting soft on us?” Luke gave Ken a friendly nudge.
“I want to go to the open sea,” Ken said. “Sell everything and buy a sailboat. Me and the family just sail from one point to another. Experience…”
“Ken,” Luke said. “I’ve been to sea. It’s the boat and water – all the time. Think about it.”
Ken closed his eyes. A good two minutes passed and he opened them.
“Well,” Luke said. “How did you like it?”
“My family talked me into coming back,” Ken said. “A shark bit my leg off, we got caught in a hurricane, sprung a leak, were adrift in a life raft for two months with nothing to eat.” Ken jumped up immediately.
“What’s wrong!” Luke said.
“We were about to eat our youngest,” Ken said. “I’m going back to the cabin the make sure we didn’t.”
Luke looked at Ken strangely.
“What?” Ken exclaimed. “You want for me to make my trip all idyllic?”