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7750 Muirfield Drive! A brand new house! A palace! Three bedrooms. It actually had cupboards with doors on them, and drawers, and a bathroom! We bought an electric stove, and we got our first telephone. We thought we were in heaven!
Central Mortgage and Housing Corporation (CMHC) was our landlord in the beginning. They planted the lawn in the front and at the sides, and ten feet behind the house. We were responsible for landscaping the rest of it. It was quite a while before we got a fence around the back yard, so I would sit on the back steps and keep an eye on the kids, then get my work done while they had their naps.
Christmas Eve, 1953, and the family gathering was at our place. A lot of work for me.
Gary wasn’t well, but the Doctor refused to come out to the house. At the beginning of the new year Gary ended up in the hospital for two months… he wasn’t absorbing his vitamins. What a stressful time that was, and we were so happy when he was able to come back home.
After the accident at Knight Road and Kingsway, I lost my nerve and couldn’t drive the car. Even being in a car was almost more than I could stand… cars coming along from side streets would make me almost hysterical, and I nearly drove Mickey up the wall. It was a few years before I got mad enough at having to rely on someone to drive me, especially to see my mom and dad, that I started driving again. We were living on Muirfield Drive at the time.
Mom and dad had bought a place at Willoughby, in Langley. They had no washing machine, so I was doing their wash, ironing and mending. I was also baking cookies for them as Mom wasn’t too well. I also made mom’s dresses. I had done that since I was sixteen. I bought a portable sewing machine and I made the kids’ clothes, some of Mickey’s shirts, and most of my own clothes.
Boy, do I jump around! I hope you can follow me!
Muirfield Drive was a veteran’s area. To rent one of these homes you had to have at least two kids (a boy and a girl). If you had all boys or all girls you had to have at least three kids. That meant a lot of kids in the area, with all the parents around the same age. None of the homes were for sale… they were strictly rental properties.
Behind our house was still bush, right over to 54th, quite a distance. Below that was Fraserview Golf Course. Also, a two block long area along the opposite side of Muirfield was bush. Eventually that two-block area was cleared… one end completely, so that they could build David Oppenheimer School, but the other end was left pretty much as it had been. They did take out some of the undergrowth after I called them and told them that kids liked to play in there, and were easy prey for predators.
The year that Ra was to start school (1956) they opened the brand new David Oppenheimer School right across the street from our crescent.
The minister of the Presbyterian Church on Nanaimo Street, the other side of the bush, phoned me. He had heard that there had been molestings in the area, and he wanted to get the bush cleared. When he talked to the city about it they said he had to prove his allegations. He asked if I knew of any family that had a child that had been molested… I said I had no knowledge of it.
I phoned the police. I said I knew they couldn’t release that kind of information to me, but would they be willing to release it to the City department involved?
They cooperated fully, and the City came and cleared the rest of the bush and turned it into Bobolink Park.
This is at the point where I’ve had to do some rethinking about my blog. Do I continue writing it? Do I stop? A lot of people stop by, but very few actually comment and let me know whether they enjoy it, or not. Is it worth my effort?
They miss out on the virtual cup of tea that I like to pour for my visitors!
The other thing… going back over the old memories brings back all the memories… not just the good ones that I write about. I have to decide which ones to write about, and which ones to exclude. I hope you agree with my decisions, and will continue to travel along with me.