Tuesday, April 7, 2009

The Benson's

The Benson’s. Not the television show but the family that lived across the street when I was a young boy growing up in the small town style of life. The family consisted of; James, the father; Helen, the mother; Mimi, the daughter who was several years older than me; Jimmy, the son who was a year younger than me; and Betsy, another daughter who was a toddler. Helen looked just like Aunt Bee of the show Mayberry with her print cotton dresses and ever present apron and had the quiet personality of Edith Bunker. She was a stay at home mom whereas my mother worked. Each day for lunch she would make peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and hot tomato soup for her children. Around 11:30 I would start hanging around with her children in the hopes of being invited to lunch, which she always did. To this day, I still enjoy peanut butter and jelly sandwiches with tomato soup. She was such a kind woman and I have fond memories of her kindness. But it was the father James that I wanted to mention. I only met him a few times. A tall imposing man who had been a member of the New York State troopers. He had left the troopers but I don’t know why. Perhaps for a better job. I entered the Benson house one day and he greeted me and told me that he wanted to show me his office/study which was the room to the left as you stepped through the front door. In the picture, it would be the window to the left of the door (naturally). In the room was a desk facing the front window. But hanging up on display on the opposite wall was a neatly pressed jacket of a New York state trooper. He told me that he had once been a New York State trooper. He just beamed with pride when he told me that. He then showed me a picture on the wall of a group of about thirty New York state troopers posing for a group picture. He told me that it was the troop of officers that he had belonged to. Once again he was beaming with pride. I don’t know what kind of work he did after leaving the state police but what impressed me as a young man of about ten years of age was the expression of pride on his face. There was so much of it that it was unmistakable to a young lad and made a lasting impression in the young boy’s memory to return on occasion in later years. Sometimes I find it amazing how the littlest of things in life can leave a lasting impression. So here is an insignificant story from my past that for some strange reason comes to mind.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Lew, that is a very nice country setting. The house is nice too. I can see why you always hung around there. Highland is a nice country town too. I am glad you enjoyed childhood. That's probably why you are such a nice man...Mary