Posted by: silverstar98121 | July 11, 2008

Misery Days

This is about the time of the year that small town all across America try to make a buck by having a town festival of some sort. Windy Point was no different. Misery Days started out as a picnic with a bunch of people who had moved to Windy Point from another state. By the time we moved there, it had evolved so that there was a parade attached. I seem to recall it was originally on Wednesday. Then somebody had the bright idea of making it on a weekend.
Once it moved to the weekend, it became a big deal. Carnies brought in rides, various charities and churches had booths selling food you wouldn’t touch otherwise. The Lions had their bingo tent, where I could be found much of the time. And of course there were the games. People came from miles around to attend.
Anytime you double the population of a small town for any length of time, you can count on having trouble. For somebody who handled the police phone for 12 hours at night, it was a nightmare. For Barney, it basically meant little or no sleep for 48 hours. Fun.
Yes, 48 hours of kids roaring up and down Main Street in their cars, bar fights, drunk driving, pick pocketing, car prowling fun. Forty-eight hours of lost kids, lost purses, lost dogs and lost tempers. Made all the more enjoyable by temperatures in the high 90’s or low 100’s. Good times.
High lights. Oh yes, there was the time Barney came upon a carnie punching his girlfriend in a car. Barney opened the door of the car, whereupon the carnie kicked out at him. His leg accidently got in the way of Barney’s 5 cell maglite. When he sobered up in jail the next day, his leg hurt. An x-ray showed it was broken. This big, brave roustabout immediately decided he had been the victim of police brutality. The sheriff’s officers, knowing that Barney weighed all of about 130 lbs soaking wet, told the man he would have to positively identify the cop who hit him. Of course, when little old Barney walked in, he decided he might be mistaken.
My highlight, or low light if you will, was the year I stepped off a railroad tie in the park, into a hole, and severly sprained my ankle. I recall lying on the ground, writhing in pain, seeing stars in front of my eyes. And some bozo comes up to me and asks me if I’m all right. Yeah, I’m just lying down here getting my exercise, fool.
The next problem was how to get half-way across the park to the police car so Barney could take me home. You must understand this was a tiny park, but it might as well have been Central Park at that moment. Finally, I got enough wind back to ask for help. A couple of guys got me to my feet and I hopped between them to the edge of the park. My foot swelled up to the size of a watermelon, and I spent the rest of that day on the couch with ice on my ankle. I had to go have it x-rayed the next day.
I’m sure there are more good times I just don’t remember from the 14 years we were in Windy Point. But perhaps chronic sleep loss during that time has given me selective amnesia. It’s probably best for the people there if that’s the case.

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