In 1960, It Snowed On A Sunday

One snowy Sunday in 1960, after attending the 9:00 Mass with my father, I walked to the parochial school next door for Sunday school and he went home. Sunday school was canceled due to the snow, but my parents didn’t know that. I decided to walk home.  Our house was roughly 10 miles away, and I was 7 years old.

In my dress coat and patent leather shoes, I walked a long way with another little girl who had just emigrated with her family from Italy to New York.  We couldn’t communicate very well, but I felt that I wasn’t alone.  She left me when we got to her house in the Italian neighborhood in my town, which was actually only about a tenth of a mile from the church.  I was already tired, shivering and wet.  I remember my white lace anklet socks were so soaked that they looked gray.  And my bare legs were going numb.  I started to realize that home was a lot farther away than it seemed when we were driving.

While my father was driving back to pick me up from Sunday school, I was walking and crying while the wind swirled the snow around me.  I made it about a mile and a half and then, thank God, a neighbor of ours who was driving home from the Lutheran church saw me and drove me home.  I was dropped off at home while my father was driving all over looking for me. To my little 7 year old mind, it never occurred to me that my family would be out of their minds with worry.  When my father arrived at the church and found out that Sunday school had been canceled and no phone calls were made home, he was frantic. And enraged at the priests.kitchel road house





While my mother hugged me and started taking off my wet clothes and putting me into my pajamas, my older brother got a roaring fire going in our fireplace. This brother, by then a teenager who teased me unmercifully yet put up with me following him around constantly, pulled a chair close to the fireplace, wrapped me in a blanket and held me on his lap with tears in his eyes.  And with a promise that for the first and only time in my life, I could eat all the bacon for breakfast. fireplace

The Sunday it snowed in 1960.







About Barb Knowles

The things that are important to me are family, friends, teaching, writing, languages and using my sense of humor to navigate this crazy world. Please join me on this blogging adventure...
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23 Responses to In 1960, It Snowed On A Sunday

  1. Carrie Rubin says:

    How horrified your parents must have been. But weren’t you quite the trooper? Thinking you could get all the way home! Glad it turned out okay.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Barb Knowles says:

      I wasn’t at all a trooper. I just did’t think I had a choice. I was little and didn’t know what to do. After this day, my parents made me always have a dime with me so I could make a phone call if there were ever an emergency. And that shows how old I am! Ten cents at a payphone. Oh man.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. that would have been a scary experience for any 7 year old—boy or girl. You know, in spite of the fact that we boys are made of snips, snails, and puppy dog tails, this proves that every once in a while, a big brother occasionally can get it right. Thank goodness he didn’t think to give you all of his soggy cereal, instead. Bacon is much tastier. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Leave it to us Lutherans to save you Catholics! LOL Wow, quite scary for a parent!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Barb Knowles says:

      Unless I’m being naive, I think that people didn’t worry as much about kids being taken as we do now. But thinking your kid is lost in the snow would be terrifying. This is one of those memories that will never be thrown out of its memory slot. Thanks for reading this!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. When I was in kindergarten one afternoon a sudden snowstorm closed the school early. I usually took the bus home. When our next door neighbor mom came by the bus stop where I was standing on the bench in the white out, I shook my head and refused to get in the car because I “wasn’t supposed to go with strangers.” The bus never showed up and I walked home.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Awww…your brother’s reaction is priceless! He (and your parents) must have been worried sick. I don’t think one can forget a memory like that, although I’m sure at that time you have no idea what the fuss was all about. Love the story, Barb!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Paul says:

    I had a comment all prepared and then I saw the word bacon and every thought in my mind focussed on that and I have no clue what I was going to say. Mmm bacon.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Barb Knowles says:

      Ha. The whole point of the story was really about the bacon. A terrible day and I had no clue that it could have also been dangerous. But the ending with my brother, the fire and the bacon was truly what has cemented it in my brain forever.

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Almost Iowa says:

    It is stories like this that send shivers down the spine of every parent.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Barb Knowles says:

      I know, can you imagine? We didn’t get warnings from our parents in those days. Other than “don’t take candy from strangers.” I never asked my parents if they were worried if I was kidnapped. I always thought that my being lost in the snow was what terrified them. I have to ask my brother.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Bea dM says:

    Your brother’s reaction must have been a great comfort, not the actual bacon! Yet snow looks so soft and lovely in your picture …

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Pingback: In 1960, It Snowed On A Sunday – La chitarra ha un nuovo re…

  10. lorriedeck says:

    Wow. That must have been so scary! I know I’m late to the party on this one, but felt I had to comment because it reminded me of something I would’ve done at that age and how scary life can be when you’re so little and realize too late that you are in too deep.

    Liked by 1 person

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