Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Nearly Wordless Wednesday (November 12, 2014) -- Guarding The Shovels In Salem Depot, NH

There is a well-known story in our family about the time my father came home from work one evening when we lived in Salem Depot, NH. He was the Assistant Manager at the Sears store in Lawrence, Massachusetts just across the state line from Salem. It had been snowing all day and he anticipated that he was going to have to shovel snow from the steps, walks and driveway when he got home. When he went to shovel after grabbing some supper, he found that the shovels were nowhere to be found.  Apparently, there was telltale evidence that some shoveling had taken place earlier in the day in the back yard where we often made snow forts or cleared an area to spray with water and create a rink -- but the snow had gone on all day and the shovels could not be seen. My father rousted the three kids and we had to don our snow gear and trudge around the backyard feeling for the shovels that were buried in the late-accumulated snow.

For years I have teased my siblings (particularly my brother Peter), by insisting that he/they were to blame and that I was innocent in the Great Disappearing Shovels caper. 

Recently a trove of lost snapshots was discovered and amongst the treasures is the proof of my innocence!

As can easily be seen in the photograph above (taken in January 1960), all three shovels were in the front yard of our home on Joseph Road in Salem Depot. My maternal grandfather's Packard is at the head of the driveway and the family Scotsman station wagon is sitting behind it. I am leaning against the lamp post holding one shovel and guarding the other two that can be seen leaning against the Packard and the Scotsman respectively. The depth of the snow can be gauged by the untouched accumulation on top of the Packard.

I take this snapshot as belated proof positive that not only was I not involved in the loss of the shovels in the back yard under late arriving snowfall -- I was actually trying to make the shovels easily available and noticeable for my father!  

Case closed.            

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January 1960 snapshot from the family collection.
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Copyright 2014, John D. Tew
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