"The house I grew up in had a great backyard..a long driveway for biking, a tree perfect for climbing, two large boulders to play around and a section that could be frozen for ice skating."
I’m Betty Martin with "Martin’s Must Reads" and Haven Kimmel’s autobiography A Girl Named Zippy took me back to those glorious days of childhood freedom and innocence. Haven grew up in the 1960’s in the small town of Mooreland, Indiana, population 300. Her book is about her life from birth through age 10.
She was a precocious child. She had a pet chicken and a cat named PeeDink. When her father asked her what she wanted to be when she grew up, she said she wanted to belong to the Mafia, so her father made her certificate declaring it so.
Edythe, her neighbor across the street did not like Haven’s cat PeeDink who had a habit of playing in her yard. Here’s an example of the neighborhood goings-on: “While we were talking, PeeDink had climbed up a pine tree next to Edythe’s house and was walking around on her roof. We watched helplessly as he jumped on her chimney and looked curiously inside, then took one step too many and went straight down. Vanished. 'Ooh, I can’t watch,' I said, pulling my knees up in front of my eyes. On the count of three - ready One. Two. And three! And PeeDink came sailing out of Edythe’s front door. He did a little somersault, then stood up and shook himself off, as he had the last six times he had fallen down her chimney. “
If you have fond memories of your childhood, then you must read A Girl Named Zippy by Haven Kimmel.