Down Necker Weekend

by Jack Keegan


Early Saturday morning the car was loaded and made ready for the trip to Leonardo. Off we went with Dad driving, Mom in the front seat and the kids in the back. Taking U.S. 1 and 9 we headed south through Elizabeth, Linden and Woodbridge to the crossing at Perth Amboy. The bridge we used was an old wooden one with horizontal planking for the roadway. As we traveled across, the wooden boards jump up and down making a clatter, clunk, clunk, clunk that seems that the span is falling apart. But the engineers who built the trestle knew what they were doing and the structure held up. At the end of the traverse we enter South Amboy taking Route 35 eastward thru Morgan, nearby are the ghostly remains of an ammunition plant that encountered a tremendous explosion in the early twenties. The stark vestige is mute testimony of the power of an ammunition detonation.

We continue thru Keansburg , taking Route 36 on to Leonardo.

We are greeted on arrival by the bungalow owners and guided to our sleeping quarters. The bungalow is a wooden affair about 24ft wide and 35ft long, exterior siding is shiplap with a wooden shingle roof. The interior is not finished, timbers, studs and rafters are exposed, it contains three bedrooms a kitchen and a large front porch. Not at all like the Millionaire's mansions in Deal. At the rear of the house is a large room that serves as an eat in kitchen. Water is supplied by a hand pump, located next to the sink. Cooking is done on a two burner kerosene stove, later replaced with a four burner propane one.

Perishables are stored in an Ice Box, which contains a large block of ice to keep meat, milk and veggies fresh.

Toilet facilities are taken care of by a Chic Sales located about fifty yards from the back of the dwelling. It's a two holeer and toilet tissue is last years Sears Roebuck catalogue.

The whole thing is not much to look at but provides an enjoyable weekend, a welcome relief from the oppressive heat in Newark.


Email this memory to a friend.
Enter recipient's e-mail: