My Grandfather and my father both worked for the Packard Agency of L.R. Mack. My father left for promises in the Westchester area, However my Grandfather stayed with Mack in Albany through retirement.
Some time during his years with them he was offered a house on the Mack estate in Loudonville just west of Albany. On the estate were five fair size homes of ancient
vintage. They did not have water, electricity or inside toilets. Around them were dairy farms with large acreage. I spent four summers of school vacations with my grand parents enjoying the unique difference from city life..
Thinking back, I imagine the winters there must have been difficult having to shovel a path to the outhouse behind the house. Hauling water from the pump house a half of a football field away. When I spent the summers there , my first morning chore was carting wash water for the laundry. A bucket in each hand was very heavy and I'd stop to rest at least once. This did not distract from the pleasure of the day.
The local farmer allowed me to help with the milking. We would take the milk to the creamery and pick up the processed milk from the day before. The milk was already bottled per order, x number of quarts, so many pints and x amount of chocolate milk. We would load it in the pickup truck, ice it down and be at the construction site of the Montgomery Ward building in Albany to sell to the construction workers during their lunch break.
Sixty-five years later when I see that building, its age resembles a medieval castle compared to the beauty that use to be.
There were wooded sections on the farm and in one wooded section was a pond enjoyed by the local residences. It was worth the half mile walk just to dive in and cool off.
Anyone who has not slid down a hay stack or brought the cows home from the fields has missed being a farm boy.
Things were great for my brother and myself until our cousin from the city (Albany) came out to play.
Billy Glickman had a strange obnoxious mentality that arose unexpectedly at anytime.
The three of us were building roads in the dirt for toy trucks when Billy scooped up a handful of dirt and threw it in (Edwin) my brother's eyes. My brother screamed and I decorated Billy's eye with a well placed fist.
For some reason my grandmother held Billy above everything and blamed me. When my grandfather came home I was reported for my behavior. The reprimand continued from all quarters till I left the table and ran out into the fields. Grandpa followed Billy the hunting dog until he found me. He wasn't in time to save Billy's other eye.
"What did you expect to accomplish by running away, " Grandpa asked?
"I was heading for the highway to hitch hike home."
"Oh no!", he said.
He and Grandma had a long talk and we took Billy back to the city. The rest of the summer was great.
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