My first memory was that of being picked up by the shore patrol on Guantánamo Bay Naval Base shortly after I had gained a degree of self mobility. This memory is assimilated mostly from traumatic events that seem to remain in a child's mind mostly on the unconscious level; however as in this case, the definite images of the shore patrol vehicle and uniformed men who appeared as kaki colored giants left a definite impression in my mind.
The augmented version of the story goes as follows: A friend on mine who had red hair along with me and my blond hair got out of range of the yards assigned to military family housing. Reporting us as missing by our mothers, the search was on. The events of the next hour would perhaps shape my attitudes regarding how my search for women would be dealt with for the rest of my life. Two shore patrol officers were dispatched in two separate vehicles. In a very short time they had apprehended the escapees and proceeded to return them to the anxious waiting mothers.
The two mothers were waiting in front of their yards. My mother had bright red hair and my friend's mother had blond hair. The shore patrol officers separated me from my friend and tried to give me to his mother while the other tried to give my friend to my mother due to our hair color. In truth, my friend with red hair had a mother with blond hair and my mother had red hair gave birth to me with blond hair. Ever since that time I have been looking for the woman I belong to.
After leaving Guantánamo Bay Naval Base my father was transferred to Idaho Falls, Idaho. I was about 3 years old but can recall specific memories associated with certain events that had the capacity to leave impression. The list of these memories is short but seems to me worth remembering.
The most impressionable was getting caught in a hail storm with my brother Bobby. It began while standing under a large tree with a small bus stop building near its base. The hail began to fall in near golf ball size . It didn't take long for my brother and I to assess the danger so we quickly ran for the small bus stop building where inside we were greeted with burley laughter from a couple of men one who was partly chewing on a big fat stubby cigar filling the room with smoke. Realizing our need to get home quickly they acted to help us.
The next thing we knew, the men found a large box big enough for both my brother and I to get under and use as a guard against the large hail falling. With a small face hole cut for my brother, we began to stumble our way through the storm zigzagging as we heard the pummeling sound of the hail. After some time of bumbling along the country road in what sounded like a drum, my brother who was taller got out from under the box and made a run for it. I remember standing there in the thumping sound of the falling hail trying to look out the little window to find out where my brother had gone.
I remember the country side where my father decided to settle for a while. It was beautiful and peaceful farm land used mostly for grazing animals. One misty day I came upon a field with some grazing horses. The field was surrounded by posts every 7 or 8 feet apart and strung with a couple of runs of barbed wire that were off the ground by 2 feet and 4 feet respectively.
As it seemed with most of my life, I was alone. I stood and watch the horses lazily grazing through the heavy gray mist that hung in the air that morning. I wasn't very tall just being a kid of about 4 years old. After watching the horses from the distance of the fence I decided to get a closer look and got over the first run of barbed wire. I walked slowly toward the grazing horse and was amazed at how tall and beautiful it was.
I wanted to get a closer look so I remember going slowly up to the horse and found that the very long legs made it easy for me to look under the horse; in fact that horse was so tall from my point of view that I could see the white coat of hair under its stomach which stood in contracts to its brown coat, black mane and tail.
As it was my nature to want to experience everything my five senses could provide me I wanted to reach out and touch its beautiful coat. As I got closer the horse whinnied a little, look at me then went back to graze. It walked a few steps away but I followed with my out stretched arm. Once again I was near the under side of the horse because I was so short. I reached out to touch the white coat of hair on its stomach. The horse whinnied suddenly, reared up and kicked me in the head with its back hoof.
I was hurt, bleeding and startled. I ran away crying in pain. I ran all the way home where my mother found the large bleeding lump on my head. She was so very worried and wanted to know what had happened. I began to tell her and the memory of everything that transpired after I was safely with my mother vanished from my memory just like the view of the horse running away into the mist of that morning.
The third memory I recall from my time in Idaho originated from a second location we had moved to. It is kind of unusual to consider what factors cause a particular memory to remain and others to vanish. Usually, as in the foregoing events it was associated with something traumatic that forces a memory to remain where other recede into neural realms of memory not active.
Anyway the final memory from this period of my life was once again marked by a traumatic event that caused the retention of the former rather mundane retained events.
The memory began in the garage we had in the area of Idaho . My mother was busy changing the diaper of my newly born sister while my border collie Rickey and I stood by and examined with the fascination of a scientist exploring an alien life form. I remember the details of the rather visually incomprehensible accompanied by olfactory sensory information that may have been more interesting to my dog Rickey but certainly ranked at the disgusting levels for me.
Seeing my scrunched up nose and displeased expression my mother told both of us to go on and get out of that area. So off Rickey and I went on a local neighborhood adventure.
Rickey wanted to follow the garbage man.
My dad's car radio antenna.