Page 20 - I Remember When

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I Remember When
of being left. Finally, when it was clear that D.P. was not
coming, Winnie accepted a ride to our house from a
neighbor . We went in the front door, looked in the din-
ing room and saw D.P. sitting at the table.
“Where have you been?” he demanded. “I’ve been
sitting here waiting for lunch. Preaching let out a long
time ago.”
D.P’s worst episode of obliviousness happened
when I was a baby. D.P. could focus onwhat he was doing
so completely that he would forget about anything else.
One day, for some reasonwhen I was a baby not yet walk-
ing, D.P. had charge of me. He put me on the front seat
of his car and headed out to do an errand of some kind.
There were neither baby seats nor seat belts in those cars,
so I just rattled around getting my brains addled. Some-
where along the way, D.P. ran out of gas and decided to
walk to the nearest filling station. He didn’t want to carry
a squirming, wet baby along, so he saw an old woman
sitting on her front porch andwalked across the lawn, up
the steps and confronted her with ”Holdmy baby while I
go to the filling station.” No please or would you! Just do
it. D.P. walked to the filling station, got the gas in his red
can, put it in the car and realized something was miss-
ing. The baby. He had to get the baby back. But wherewas
it? He looked around and all the houses looked exactly
the same with identical lawns, front porches, and screen
doors. There was no old lady sitting in a swing on any
porch. So he just went door to door, knocking loudly, and
demanding at each house, “Do you have my baby?” until
he came upon the old lady who had me. She was more
than a little bit put out and handing me over said, “From
now on, you just hold on to your own baby, mister”!