In retrospect, it is impossible to discern exactly how I had learned to concoct such a scheme. In all likelihood, it was probably my parent’s lack of guidance that enabled me to learn such a thing.
As far as my dad went, he was of Polish descent. Although he was somewhat of a prideful person, he was also a quiet and temperamental man who seldom interacted with his children. Unless of course, there was the need to discipline us with a belt whenever we acted up. The exception to that was when he was smashed from drinking, which was a constant thing, and you just never knew what to expect when he was in that condition.
In contrast, my mother was somewhat the opposite of my father. Unlike him, she was a fiesty, full-blooded Italian woman who was a heavy drinker herself and a mean-spirited person no matter what condition she was in. Even being short in stature she would challenge anyone, including my dad, who would remind her (and us) that he was a championship wrester for three years in high school. Despite my mother’s apparent Napoleon complex, she was an old-fashioned woman of sorts, and as I would discover in Monterey Hills she was a hustler as well.
A month after we moved to Roanoke, Norfolk & Western (as it was called then) sent my dad to go to school in Atlanta, Ga. in order to be trained as an engineer. With mom home to cook for us, it probably saved our house from Dawn and Michelle’s experimentations.
A couple of days after our dog scheme, those two geniuses started a grease fire in the kitchen and tried to put it out with water. Fortunately, Bobby came in and saved the house from burning to the ground. However, the kitchen wasn’t so lucky. Like I said before, it was a tough transition for us, especially in that first month.
With dad being away, mom put her hustling skills to work and opened up her own candy factory right from the comfort of her home. It wasn’t sophisticated by any means. Her operation only consisted of the stove top, a sauce pan, bags of chocolate that she purchased, molds to form candy bars, and saran wrap. Once her product was ready for sale, she would dispatch Bobby, Dawn, and Michelle to go out into the neighborhood to sell the candy bars.
It didn’t take long to take off. The neighborhood kids quickly realized that they could get the candy bars that mom offered cheaper than the factory made being ones sold at the store across the street, so they came to our house instead.
Mom’s candy operation seemed to of given her purpose in life. Granted, she was always more interactive with us children, at least way more than our dad was. However, what we couldn’t deny was during this period she definitely doted on us more and was certainly less crabby. Still, she continued to drink, but only occasionally.
Things went south when dad returned from Atlanta. With his return it didn’t take long for the candy operation to go out of business once mom and dad resumed the lifestyle that they were accustomed to.
As us children would learn, their partying revolved around dad’s schedule. Now that he was an engineer driving a train he was allocated a certain amount of time to rest after his run was over. When that period expired, he would be “on call”, unless he used one of his allocated days to “mark off.” It was these indicators that we would listen for, hoping that dad would be on call.
Next in the series – Against the System: In the beginning – Part 5
Contact the author at:
David Bomber #1130793
Nottoway Correction Center
P.O. Box 488
Burkeville, Va. 23922
email me @ http://www.jpay.com by submitting my name or Virginia State ID number: 1130793.
Categories: David Bomber