Turning The Pages

By: Paige Cline

While talking about being on Castle Rock and looking down on the streets of our sleepy, sometimes bustling, little town, it brought to mind images of the sights and sounds that were typical back in that day. 
Weekdays were different from week-ends. For that matter, Saturdays were much different from Sundays. Main street began to fill up pretty early on a Saturday morning as the miners and their families came to town for the weekend shopping and recreation. 
The Salvation Army ladies were always there with their tambourines accepting gifs for their worthy causes. Sometimes they would be accompanied by other members, soldiers I guess you would call them, and they would play musical instruments and sing hymns. it never ceased to amaze me at the way these ladies, who usually looked like someone’s grandmother, would go in the poolrooms and beer joints and be treated with the greatest respect. The most boorish of the lot would show manners that most people thought they were incapable of. 
In appreciation for coins dropped in their tambourines, the ladies would give a poppy which the donors wore proudly in their lapel or buttonhole. 
Different folks or groups would take advantage of the Saturday crowds to seek donations for their causes. It might be a church group or an individual who is obviously crippled or, in at least one case I know, blindness. 
There was this one fellow who came from “up the river” to seek help. He was blind and always wore what we called a policeman’s or a truck driver hat. He would set his chair in a good location, usually on the corner of Holloway’s, take out his old banjo and sing for decent crowds for most of he day. Appreciative, or sympathetic folks would drop coins into a bucket on the street in front of him. He became a regular, especially on payday weekends. 
Weekdays on Main street were different. The easy going, workaday world moved along at a more leisurely pace. Not many folks on the streets except those who worked in town or worked nowhere. 
After the shade came over, a favorite place for some of the older men was on the wooden benches against the wall of Holloway’s. They were intended for passengers waiting for the Consolidated Bus to come rolling in. 
Folks like our grandfather, Dan W. Cook would sit and whittle and argue politics by the hour. I remember one time the Holloway brothers were somewhat upset that they had to replace the benches because they had become unsafe to sit on. It seems that some of the fellows forgot to bring wood to whittle, so they took to cutting little notches out of the benches. After a long while, the integrity of the bench was compromised. In other words, someone was in danger of busting his tate if there was an event. 
Lane Cook’s taxis that were busy on Saturdays were idle much of the time during the week. Lane loved to play rummy, so there were many interesting games in the back seat of his taxi until a call came for a fare. 
In the meantime, folks were going about their business in the two drug stores on Main Street, or in the barber shops of Walt rose and Estel Morgan, or in one of Allen’s Restaurants or Donnie’s Diner or Jack Hicks’ Cheerio Cafe. Others may have had business in Ted Layle’s hardware store. 
Sandra Taylor – turning the pages for 11-18-09 
Page 2 
Liquor store business was slow until Saturday. The court house always had patrons and when court was in session, everything was much livelier. 
Then there was Sunday. Few businesses stayed open on Sunday The drug store and the theatre–that was about it. After church and Sunday dinner, folks found ways to relax before the new work week began. For many’ it was relaxing in the shade on the court house lawn. 
Before the war, people were coping with the depression. After Pearl Harbor, the war was in everyone’s hearts and minds. Tough times–but they were tough people just trying to cope. And kids caught in the middle while…..growin’ up. 
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