When I was a young boy from…
When I was a young boy from the ages of about 9 years old until 13 I lived in the suburbs of Pittsburgh, PA. Our neighborhood was full of young boys around the same age. While we played a lot of basketball on the street, football in the empty lot, and soccer in my back yard (until we broke a window the third time), my favorite activity was playing in the woods.
In particular, the best was building a tree fort. I call it a fort, not a house, as we were there to protect our turf from the imaginary bad guys and the real ones, our older brothers!
We of course, had a pad lock to secure the entry and a password was necessary if someone was already in it.
We built the fort out of extra wood we gathered from the lumber yard in the area. Actually, thinking back on it this was quite a feat for 6 young men. We were probably 400 yards deep into the woods behind the nearest street and daily lugged our tools and supplies.
We eventually got electricity by running the longest set of connected extension cords one may imagine. Don’t tell anyone, but we connected the line into an outside plug of the nearest home.
We would stay in the woods all day long. We fished for salemanders in the creek, ate green apples from the tree of a little old lady who lived deep in the woods at the end of a dirt road. Well, actually we ate the apples until she scared us off with a shotgun full of rock salt – no foolin’! Ouch! We also slept in the fort after much begging to our parents.
We eventually became friendly to the old woman by picking and giving her wild flowers. From then on, she gave us lemonade all summer long!!!