In those days, Coffeyville Kansas was a small town that didn't ask for much. Aside from a demolition derby here, and a reenactment of our towns' folk killing bank robbers there, we didn't have much for entertainment.
So the perplexing question my father must have asked himself daily..."How do I entertain these 5 kids of mine?"
BOAT SHOW. YES!
What better way to bond with the family, than to load into an aerostar, drive 1.5 hours, to look at boats inside a convention center. (There is no water inside this convention center. The boats just sat there lifelessly).
I was four. In my lust for boats at that age, I must have gotten really excited by all the boats...or shall I say, mom and dad must have gotten really excited by all the boats, because the only true memory I have of that boat show is being carried by a man in a cowboy hat to the lost and found children (apparently cowboys don't like children wondering around boat shows unattended).
I was put in a play pen with other kids whose parents too, had been caught up in the hype of a still boat on concrete. Later I was reunited with my family.
The next day I was given a friendship bracelet from my mom...It looked like any standard velcro, wristband, bracelet of the decade...except this bracelet was extra special. For this bracelet had a curly chord (like that of a telephone) which connected to moms wrist. At four years old, I had never been so embarrassed.
I looked so uncool playing in my front yard with (literally) a leash tied to my mom's arm.
The leash came in handy later though when we all played house. Naturally, I was the dog.
In today's society, neighbors might frown on children running around in the front yard, while tied to a tree.
But in those days, they smiled and waved as I barked when they went by.