In the photo above is mom on the right, my brother Glenn, our friend Bob holding my brother Kevin, Bob’s wife Elaine and me in front of Elaine. We had taken Bob and Elaine to the Frankfurt American Airport in Frankfurt, Germany for them to return home to the states.
We first knew Bob and Elaine in Arkansas, then Bob and dad was stationed at the same place in Giessen, Germany. After Bob retired from the Army, they would sometimes visit us in Louisiana and mom and dad would sometimes go to Arkansas to visit them.
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Bob and Elaine were older than mom and dad, and having them around felt like having grandparents around me. We we living in Giessen, Germany which is about five thousand miles away from home where our grandparents were living, so Bob and Elaine were a great set of substitute grandparents.
Elaine taught me how to crochet when I was about eight years old. She showed me using the thin thread that was used for doolies. She also gave me a watch of hers, which I remember mom having a hard time finding a replacement band that would fit my then tiny wrist.
Bob had a “game” he would play with my brothers and me. He would hold a small paper bag, reach in it and throw an invisible ball in the air. He would then catch the invisible ball in the paper bag which we could hear a thump on the bag when Bob would catch the invisible ball.
We were so amazed and couldn’t figure out how he would do it. It was probably a year later that he let on that he would snap his fingers on the bag which was what made the thump sound.
All-in-all the invisible ball trick is one of my fond memories from my childhood along with fond, loveable memories of Bob and Elaine.