Tuesday, April 23, 2013

T ~ To Take Down or To Move, That is the Big Decision


These are the continuing adventures of a Swedish immigrant during her first year as an American. She boldly went where she'd never gone before...please come along on Adventures in America.

When we still lived in Sweden, we were really blessed to have a huge section of woods right at the end of our little three-house street. There was the big street, which had the name, Stråkvägen, then there were about 16 of these off-shoot streets which had the numbers. We were 8A. The C houses bordered the woods. The kids in the neighborhood played in the woods all the time.

One of our favorite activities was building forts. We did it right, and the contestants on Survivor could have taken shelter building lessons from us, let me tell you.

We built this really awesome hide-out one time, with the help of some older kids, who actually let us help build AND hang out. We ran into a big problem though. The older kids told us rumors about a rival group of older kids who wanted to find our special place and destroy it. We younger kids were all very scared of this happening.  Playing with the older kids (almost high school, as I remember) was a big boon.  Well, we did have to bring snacks...

Let me tell you, this place was the real deal. As I recall (and we've discussed my recall enough) about 8 or 9 of us fit in there all at one time, and it was nicely camouflaged from the outside. Long afternoons were spent debating whether to just tear it down ourselves before “the others” did it, or  to take it apart carefully and move it to a more secure location.

I sure wish I remembered what we decided, but regardless of what it was, we never had that special place again. In retrospect, I think the older kids just tore it down, built another one (easy for them) somewhere else so that they didn't have to put up with us pesky younger ones anymore.

It did spark some creativity in the younger set. Here are some of our attempts...

(This is me, Swissie, and  my best friend Ann-Charlotte, who was a magical two years older and taught me so much, including how to read (not exaggerating).  She lived in 6A, as in behind our backyard)

(This is her younger brother, Joakim, who was in my class throughout school, well the three years I spent there, and we were very good friends, too.)

If you haven't noticed by now, the woods, the multitude of kids, and the special friends were what I missed the most about moving.  I got used to the culture, but I only saw Ann-Charlotte one more time, when I was much, much older.

16 comments:

Amy "Lyre" Turner said...

It sounds like your forest fort was amazing. :-)

I love to hear the things that people remember from or carry with them from childhood.

Instead of a fort, I had tubing.

Lyre @ Lyre's Musings

A Daft Scots Lass said...

Have you ever tried to get in touch with Ann-Charlotte again??

Brian Miller said...

ha. def brought back memories...i grew up with woods all around...and we had some awesome forts...and battles....

hiya.

smiles.

JoJo said...

My cousins & I made a couple of awesome forts on my parents' property at the woods' edge. Unfortunately my dad dismantled them and burned the branches and stuff the following spring. We were heartbroken. So we rebuilt it, then drew up a 'deed', and 'forced' him to sign it giving us ownership of that part of the yard. LOL We were like 11.

Ornery's Wife said...

I always wanted a tree house, but I didn't have access to the trees or other "builders" that you did. What a delightful childhood!
tm

M. J. Joachim said...

Forts are so much fun. I remember having a fort outside between two huge pine trees. We nailed long boards into each tree, to make a wall of sorts. Then we laid another big board on top to make a ceiling. The back of the fort was open, with a fence we could climb through to get in and out. I used to play dolls in there all the time.

Thanks for the trip down memory lane. Your fort looks awesome and your pics are so cute. Ah yes, friends - a vital part of growing up and being human!

Jo said...

No forts in my childhood, although we did have a secret meeting spot in a corn field. The farmer must have hated we kids because we flattened so much of his crop.

JO ON FOOD, MY TRAVELS AND A SCENT OF CHOCOLATE

Andrew Leon said...

We built forts down at the farm, but it was just me and my cousins down there. Lots of playing in the woods but not very many kids.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You had a large neighborhood which meant a lot of playmates. Bet that was difficult to leave behind.

Carol Kilgore said...

We only built inside forts with chairs, pillows, and blankets. Outside, we climbed trees and hid ourselves up there.

C. Kirk said...

We built indoor forts. I never lived near the woods but I bet that was fun...and dirty! lol I would have missed that too.

Chontali Kirk
chontalikirk.blogspot.com

Sue McPeak said...

Wonderful memories of childhood adventure, survior skills, friends and foes. How neat that you have those pictures, too.

Sure brings back memories of Tree Houses and MudPies.

My Letter 'T'...Only In Texas Towns
Sue CollectInTexasGal
AtoZ LoneStar Quilting Bee

Andrea said...

Oh the threat of a rival group! We had that when our middle schools merged. We were told there would be lead pipes and chains...because what 13 year old can't easily procure those items!

Imogen Elvis said...

Building forts is so fun! My sisters and I used to do that all the time. It was so fun. We didn't have a neighbourhood to play in, but having three sisters made up for that.

Rachel said...

I used to build forts with my friends, but we didn't have wood to use. Instead, we used old baby blankets and clothespins, held up on trees and a chain length fence that separated my friends' yards.

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tina .. we never built anything like that .. sounds such a glorious time - all coming together to build the hideout, then sharing it together even if as little ones you had to bring the snacks!

Great memories .. I love the thought of a tree house now, or a camoflauged hide-away ..

Cheers Hilary