I would have been 11 or 12 years old. We still lived down on the creek, out of Jollyville.
I was left at home alone, which was unusual for my family to do when I was that age. I guess they didn’t know if there would be a house to come back to if they left me there by myself. I was prone to experiment with stuff, as that was when Chemistry Sets were popular. But on this Saturday there was no testing of stuff going on.
I remember it being a very cold day, one where stepping out on the front porch to get more wood to keep the first place roaring was about all the outside activity I cared for.
I have no idea where the other three members of the household had gone. I was old enough that I could read almost anything, but it wasn’t something I ever did, as it required me sitting still too long at a time. We didn’t have a huge selection of reading materials in our house. It was a small one bedroom place with a small living room and a really tiny kitchen dining room combination. The bathroom was not much bigger than a travel travel has. The house was originally built as a weekend getaway for a wealthy couple in Austin. The man had passed on, so she decided to rent the place out. We came along at the right time.
Since it was just a one bedroom, Kenny and I slept on a fold down sofa. It wasn’t like the ones you see today where a bed pulls out from beneath. It was truly a fold down, with the seat forming half the bed and the back being the other half.
This is the type of couch that was very popular in the 60s. Ours was red with the head of what in remember as a Hereford bull of each side.
The fireplace was the main source of heat. It wasn’t a very well constructed fireplace. It didn’t draft corrected so you really had to pile the wood in it, to feel the heat half way across the living room.
Electric blankets were popular back then, so once you got in bed you could stay warm.
With me being there alone that day, I became bored and was prowling around and ran across a collection of Texas Freemason Magazines in an old trunk. I don’t remember my Daddy ever sitting around reading them, but he held on to them like he may one day start reading them.
I knew everything about the Masonic Lodge was secretive, so I was pretty sure I didn’t have any business looking at them. I got a big stack of them a set down in a chair and wrapped up in a big blanket. As I started reading them I started running across stories, I think they were more human interest type stories. I remember sitting there all day reading those stories. I don’t think I ever read anything that seemed the least bit secretive.
I found a bunch of those magazines on EBay and bought them a little while ago. I really want to know what kind of stories it was that captivated my attention enough that I still remember it almost 60 years later.
The thought crossed my mind as I was writing this; What if Cecil Lewis had a stack of Playboy Magazines hidden away that I grabbed up that day and read to my hearts content.