Childhood Games

young child in cowboy hat, holster and cap gun, father holding a large fish
Fishing with Dad

Childhood Games

During my grade-school years we neighborhood children, the first class after World War Two, played role-play games among the trees, clay hills and debris created from the building of new homes along the edge of our village. Everyone else wanted cap guns, and so I had to have one too. Sneaking away on quiet afternoons of summer, I cut branches from a tree, found cord and feathers. Made a bow to string and sharpened arrows, fletching them with chicken feathers. I learned to mark a trail…find “wild” foodstuffs in the farmers’ fields and cow pastures. I learned legends, mapped the stars on drawing paper. One classmate, who lived up the hill from us a ways, was Indian. My people came from eleven different countries. Until his house burned down, one night, and, I was told, he went to live in an orphanage in a distant town, we were friends.

early childhood games—
I was an Indian and
my friends were cowboys

“Childhood Games”. Copyright © 2016-02-07, by Lizl Bennefeld. All rights reserved.

8 thoughts on “Childhood Games

    1. I was accustomed to death, I think.Or didn’t think much about it. I was frightened at the thought that only my friend escaped alive from the house. The folks didn’t talk much about it, but as I understood it, his mother, older sister and the sister’s child did die in the fire. Within six years we had also lost two of my siblings shortly after they were born, and a few years later, but still before the fire, the vet who lived down the hill from us (I helped to gather and candle eggs there, and his wife was like a mother to me), came running up the hill for my father’s help; the vet’s wife died in her sleep. (My first attendance at a funeral.)

      There’s always been the inevitability of loss. There were so many losses. So many things I didn’t understand, that I just stored away in a corner of my mind. Figured that if it was important, I’d eventually know. Figured I have to understand everything to move on. There was no one to ask who would give me information, nobody to lean on or talk to, so each time, I just gave it my best shot or tabled it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I’m sorry you experienced all those losses so young, and apologies if my question brought up painful memories. It is amazing what a child’s mind will do to protect itself from things that just can’t be processed at the time…then we have all of adulthood to unravel it and make sense of it all means and figure out how it has shaped us…

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I think that for me, it was the pinto ponies that they were pictured as riding in the books that were read to us as children. There were horses in the pasture in back of us, and I was horse mad from an early age.

      There were plenty of feathers for me, since I helped the veterinarian/farmer down the hill with gathering and candling eggs during my grade-school years.

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