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Growing Up in Bandera

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If your kids are asking you to explain what the term “back in the day” means you probably need to let them get out a little more often.

I don’t know if city folks use those words but I have heard them almost all my life. Once you grasp the meaning then you begin to associate certain things with those long ago times.

As a school kid I often took my lunch in a brown paper bag. Inside there was a sandwich made with white bread and wrapped in wax paper.

I didn’t even know that other types of bread existed until later in life.

Without a doubt my sandwich was always made with two slices of bread, a bit of salad dressing and a single slice of bulk baloney.

That thick slice baloney from the Country Shopper meat market was always sliced to my mothers specifications. Even when I was doing the shopping errand for my mom the butcher would slice one slab and show it to me for approval and it was always exactly like she wanted. I guess showing it to me was just an unnecessary courtesy.

After grade school I moved over to the high school and discovered it wasn’t cool to take a brown bag lunch.

So I either took a quarter so I could eat in the lunch room or I walked home for a baloney sandwich.

We were allowed to go to town at lunchtime if we wanted to eat in the cafes but the quarter lunch in the cafeteria was usually a better fit my budget.

My buddy Richard Kinsey and I would sometimes spend our lunch free time dragging main street or going to the river to do some mudding in his brothers old Ford if we recently had rain.

We had an early lunch schedule around 10:30 am so the ladies in the kitchen would always fix us fish sticks no matter what was on the menu.

The fish sticks and a daily apple were the only things I remember from those meals. I would have been satisfied if the cafeteria had served baloney sandwiches back in the day.

Instead of me walking three blocks to our house for my favorite meal I could have brought my quarter and got an apple to boot.

Growing Up In Bandera back in the day has left it’s mark on me in more ways than I can count.

I still regularly refer to the refrigerator as the ice box and the parking brake will forever be the emergency brake to me.