Monday, May 14, 2012

Get Your Paper!

"Get your paper! Get your daily paper!" I was a little girl when we went to Dayton when the newspaper hawkers cried out these words. "Get your paper! Get your morning paper!" Didn't matter what time of day, they were there with newspapers in hand.

Well, we got our paper and mail at the end of our lane in the mailbox. Usually, it was a big event watching for the mailman then deciding who would walk the lane to get the mail. It was much more popular in the summer to get the mail than in the winter. Sometimes getting the mail meant waving to Victor and Doris sitting out on their porch across the road. Sometimes it ended up with the errant mail gatherer sitting on the same with Victor and Doris. Once in awhile someone would drive down the road about the time the lane walker got to the end of the lane. Since there was little traffic on Neff Road, conversations often went on for awhile.

We lived on Rural Route then. We didn't have a house number. We lived on R. R. #2. I'm not sure how the mailman knew who lived where since we all lived on R. R. #2. Maybe he had a good memory or a map. It was probably because there were fewer people back then. I'm pretty sure that if someone only wrote to Willard Loxley, Arcanum, Ohio, the letter would still find our mailbox. In fact, it could just read Willard Loxley, Arcanum, and still get there. It was right up there with the party line and doctor who came to the house.

The paper was simple back then. The major crimes were more than likely a cow tipped over or corn shocks knocked over when fall arrived. Crime was minimal then. Over the last five to ten years I've seen more and more crime mentioned in the paper. Rapes, drugs, murder. What is going on in my beloved county? More and more drugs are finding their way into outlying areas where they can be manufactured and sold without much notice. Here in Oregon these people hide illegal crops in our national forests and manufacture in neighborhoods. I don't like it. So what can I do about it? I am trying so hard to teach my granddaughters about drugs, about their safety. I try to be vigilant about who lives around me. Last year I called the police on neighbors who were growing marijuana next door by our house. It was being grown legally for medical use, but these people loved to share it with friends. The police could do nothing; however, because of my call, these guys were now on the police radar. Perhaps we can change the kind of news that makes the headlines.

Missing the old days of walking down the lane. The days of simple news. Now I support the local paper, because it is is still a history of a place called Neff Road. "Get your paper! Get your Daily Advocate!"

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