Your three words, my little story: kangaroo, basement & lamp
This BASEMENT reminded me of the one in Lanham, on Cordova Street. We lived there from 1960 to 1965, I was eleven when we moved from there to the farm in Hughesville.
My scariest memory of that basement was when my brother, George, and I were downstairs watching a scary movie. It was called, ‘It Came From Outer Space’. Mom called us, “It’s time to come upstairs.” The reason for calling us up, must not have been that important, because she allowed me to stay down and watch the rest of the show, while George left. It was dark outside, so it might have been close to our bed time.
By today’s standards it was not a very scary movie. But I was nine and when it was over, I was afraid to get off the couch and go upstairs. However, I eventually did.
While upstairs in the kitchen, dad noticed I didn’t turn off the basement light, he asked, “Did you forget something?”
I knew exactly what he was talking about, because I was too scared to turn it off, but what I said was, “What?”
“The basement light is still on. Turn it off.” We didn’t have a switch at the top of the stairs to turn any lights on or off. All we had were lambs. The only light on downstairs was a table LAMP, and it was all the way across the then freighting wide open space.
I can’t remember actually turning off the light and going back upstairs, but I do remember standing there with my thumb and forefinger on the knob. Afraid beyond belief, of the mad dash that laid ahead of me. In my mind, I had to negotiate a path from the lamb to the bottom step, in the dark. With tears in my eyes I called to dad, “Please dad! Please!” I don’t remember actually doing it, I just remember the fear.
That memory is fifty-five years old. This basement was wide open just like ours was, but it didn’t have a television, couch or chairs. The walls and tables were full of photos, art work, guns, mounted heads and statues.
It was an amazing room, but there was one item that was called into question. It was a stuffed KANGAROO and it had another stuffed kangaroo in it’s pouch. When Carol saw me pointing at it, she giggled and said, “Yeah, that looks out of place, doesn’t it?”
I said, “Sure does.”
“It belongs to my daughter, and she thinks it should hang around with the rest of the art…”