Folks as you sit there reading, you need to open up your imagination just a bit. You look out the nearest window back to the years of 1950 and 1951. Times have been tough in America and things are beginning to heal. You look at that tar papered house at the end of the road. This is Strong Maine and one of the last places you thought you would see a house such as this. Today is a nice warm summer day.  The air smells so fresh. It rained during the night and the scent from the wood working mills have yet to drift up from downtown. You watch as the kids that live in this house begin to come out and play. One little white haired boy in particular catches your eyes. He is dressed in just a t shirt and some cut off pants. Most probably he has outgrown them and the legs got cut off. They are still good britches and there is no need for fancy clothes on a day such as this. What surprises you most is that the young lad is actually clean, but that will not last long. The rain last night has created many puddles that just need attention. There is no hesitation on the youngsters part. Puddle jumping is one of his favorite past times. There is no need for toys on a day such as this. Mother Nature has supplied all a young lad needs for now. With pieces of edgings from the local lumber yard construction has begun. Soon, he will have created great lakes and rivers that will survive until the sun gets high in the sky. But even then, that just leads to a different game. What was once a mud puddle is now just mud. Forts and castles can be created. Valleys will be dug to channel what may remain of last nights rain. A whole new world of fun and imagination has been created. As you watch, the boy has been transformed from a clean kid to the normal dirty faced boy you have come to know. There seems to be no limit to the fun he now enjoys.  It is with envy that you watch how much freedom surrounds the dirty faced little boy. He has no store bought toys but has created a whole new life with just dirt and water. Mud huts and roads like you have never seen are taking shape. The look of life and creations are just beckoning you to join in and be free again. How as adults, we wish we could be that little dirty faced boy living at the end of the road. Nothing is expected of him but to just be out of the way. With his imagination and hands he creates a world of life and laughter. It is a simple game of life and all he needs to do is stay out of trouble. These fun and games will end soon. The sun eventually dries all the earth again. The water and mud disappears. But the young lad will just open another page of his imagination and a new game will begin. How sad it is that we as adults begin to lose the concept of creating fun with no expectations. Our imagination becomes less used and begins to be limited. We tend to dream of days gone by. Those days when we could be that dirty faced little youngster. There was no need to try and be fancy for anyone. People just had to accept you just the way you are. We lose that type of thinking and try to be what we are not. I am glad I was that white haired, dirty face, mischievous boy at the end of the road. Maybe, just maybe, I will go out and play in the mud again. But this time, I just might have to wear shoes.

Ken White…. Mountainman…  we must never lose site of the freedom from expectation.   Peace on folks.

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