I was only 6 years old when we left Newark
to move to Iselin in 1952.
We lived on South 7th Street in a 3 family house. We lived on
the first floor, the Greiners lived on the second floor, and the
Chalmers lived on the 3rd floor.
I have fond memories of the Chalmer's home - they had a piano
which I played with my feet!! Mr. Chalmers yelled at me for doing
that!! Mrs. Chalmers had a sewing room - and I loved the smell of
it. She baked with "Crisco" and it looked like vanilla
icing to me. She asked me if I'd like a taste of it and I said "yes"!!!!!
When my brother, George, was about to be born, (May 1950), I was
whisked up to the Greiner's during the night. I remember Eileen
Greiner being so nice to me.
The Chalmers' were wonderful to me, too. Rita Chalmers walked
me to school at St. Antoninus when I was 5 years old.
Across the street from St. Antoninus was the most wonderful "Lemon
Ice" that I've ever had!!!
Then there were the McGuire's who lived next door to us. The McGuire
girls took me to the library and I loved the covers of the books.
My best friend was Bernadette Crane, her father worked for Coke-a-Cola.
When I moved at 6 years old, I never thought I'd see her again,
but I did. When I attended Woodbridge High School, Class of 1963,
Bernadette was a school mate of mine. Small world!!!!!
My mother would give me a shopping list when I was 6, and I was
to go to the A&P on Central Avenue to buy baby food for my brother.
I couldn't read at the time, so I'd ask some nice looking woman
to help me decipher what my mother has written. I can still see
one of the woman's face who was kind enough to help me.
I remember the toy store on the corner of S. 7th Street and Central
Avenue. I'd get one of those paddles with the ball and bounce it
back and forth. I remember the A&P on Central Avenue. I remember
a place that stuffed animals - real animals - and they were shown
in the front window!!! I remember a little store, next to the A&P,
that had saw dust on the floor. When you'd ask for a product, such
as "Spic and Span", they'd get it off of a shelf with
a utensil that had "claws".
I remember the first African-American family to move in by us.
Mr. Jenkins - he had a straw hat, suspenders, the most starched
white shirt I'd ever seen, and he lived directly across from us.
I had a friend named "Gracie". We sniffed glue - we
had no idea what it was, but it smelled good!!!! Remember, we were
only 6 years old!!!
I have lots more memories - and I'm surprised as I write this
- seeing as I'm now 57 years old!!! I'm going back 51 years!!!!
If I think of anything else, I'll let you know!!!!!!
I'd be so happy to hear from any of the folks I mentioned here!