Our family arrived in Spokane, rented a house, and dad went to work for Kaiser Aluminum. The house we rented was a very typical home of the early 1950’s. Our new home did have several things which were new to me and still stand out in my memory. We had a concrete sidewalk in front of the house, a street light which provided light for our front and side yard, and a fenced back yard. The house also had a picture window in the living room. This was my first experience with such a large window in a home.
The local neighborhood grocery store was on the opposite end of the block we lived on. There were plenty of families in the neighborhood who had children and we soon had friends to play with. Living in the city wasn’t so bad for young kids.
One of my early friends in Spokane was a boy about my age. His family lived about a block down the street in a nice home. Their home also had a big picture window facing out over the large front porch and steps. The steps were concrete and the porch was about six steps above the front sidewalk.
My next adventure happened in front of my friends house while waiting for him to come outside. We were going to go play baseball when he was ready. The concrete steps provided a perfect spot for me to play catch as my ball bounced back when thrown against the back of them. Most of my catches were made about twenty feet away from the steps.My one person game was going just fine until the ball hit directly on the lip of one of the steps, bounced towards the house, and went through the great big picture window into their living room. The hole through the window was perfect for the ball size with some shattered cracks radiating away from it. The ball sounded like an explosion when it went through that wonderful picture window. My mind envisioned the police coming to take me to jail.
My friends mother retained her composure very well. She asked how and why the ball was thrown through the window. She listened politely as the explanation was given. She wanted to know if my father was home or what time he would be home. The last directions she gave me were to go home and tell my mother what had happened. My father could come and see my friends father after work. What a long walk home. No doubt dad was going to lay the belt to my rear for breaking the window.
My memory doesn’t recall the resolution of the broken window as my orders were to stay home while the grown ups worked things out. My father wasn’t happy, but he didn’t lose his temper. When it was all over the friends family got a new picture window…….but my baseball disappeared forever in their living room.