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How I Became Bravewarrior

Updated on October 25, 2016

How I Became Bravewarrior

I actually wrote this as a short story. It came to me at the spur of the moment, as do all I write. I must mention, this is not fiction; it's true. Pursuant to my writing it, I asked my brother and a few select friends to read it and the response was resounding: it's not a short story, it's the prelude to a novel. This inspired me to do so, although it's going to take some time. However, I thought I'd share this and get feedback from the HubPages Community, of whom I've grown to respect and love. Please let me know your thoughts.....



Ancient trees
Ancient trees | Source
Path to Imagination
Path to Imagination | Source
She Dances With Spirit - a painting by my brother
She Dances With Spirit - a painting by my brother

The Setting

The year is 1966 and I’m 9 years old. My best friend’s name is Imagination. Up ‘til now, I was an Air Force Brat, never living in one town or one state, for that matter, long enough to make friends. When I did, it hurt too much upon parting. So I went into myself and became my own best friend.

There was an empty lot across the street from where we lived in Philly. We called it Michaud’s. Judging from the slate slab in the center of the lot and the broken pieces strewn throughout, a family named Michaud must have lived there at one time, losing their home (and perhaps their lives?) to fire. All that was left was slate, blackberry trees, honeysuckle bushes and the best tree-climbing trees I’d ever encountered.

Once a year, the carnival would come to town and park itself in our beloved Michaud’s playground. It came to life, albeit a different life, with color, laughter and carnival music, but it wasn’t as memorable as what Michaud’s was to me then, and today, in the “favorites” of my memory bank.

Michaud’s was a setting for mystery, wonder and imagination. There were concrete steps, directly across the street from our row house, leading up the hill to the mystique of Michaud’s. On either side of the steps were brambles of blackberry bushes. Directly to the left, beyond the brambles, was a huge blackberry tree, with limbs so heavy with fruit, I could reach them without standing on my tippy toes. The bramble on the left, nestled at the bottom of the hill, became a ground fort for my brother and me. More importantly, it was where I’d transform into a Cherokee warrior or a squaw, depending on who I felt that day.

My brother and I have Cherokee blood coursing through our veins – not a lot – but enough that the spirit has guided me throughout my life. And his.

Upon reaching the final ascent, the mystical world of Michaud’s opened up to a vast playground for my imagination. Directly to the right, was a chain link fence defining the property line of a vast, grassy, treed landscape at the rear of an insurance building’s property. We called it “the insurance lot”. We’d have “rumbles” there, where basically you’d tackle and be tackled - without benefit of a football, climb trees and play hide n seek. The fence was trellised with sweet, wild honeysuckle bushes, from which we drank often.

Directly in the center of Michaud’s was a huge gray slate slab, thought to have been the foundation of a once thriving home. Leading up to what I imagined to have been the kitchen, were red square pavers. On the far left of the property were huge trees where the “bad boys” of the neighborhood built a formidable tree house. You had to be invited – don’t dare let anyone catch you helping yourself to the view, or you’d pay dearly!

Adjacent to the far left of the property, and at the bottom of the hill, was a concrete wall; backdrop to the Iroquois Apartment building. It was there I spent many hours playing handball and pitching pennies.

Looking straight ahead, at the forefront of the property (or perhaps it was the rear?) was City Line Avenue, a four lane road dividing Philly from Bala Cynwyd. We once had a German Shepard lose her life on that road, but our parents never worried about us, because Michaud’s had us captivated!

So, now you can imagine the layout. Let’s go back to Michaud’s where the magic of my imagination came to life.

Characters Emerge

I was full of spirit as a young girl; mostly ornery, but spirited nonetheless. I’ve mentioned that my brother and I are part Cherokee. Although not full blood, it courses through our souls and is what guides our creativity.

Mine knew no gender. One day I’d be a warrior pounding out war paint from blackberries, onto a slab of slate. When I had a substantial amount, I’d paint my face in preparation of battling the elements as “Bravewarrior”.

On another day, I’d form a bowl out of the blackberry brambles, line it with leaves, and use a broken piece of slate to pound out the day’s meal, as a Cherokee squaw.

No matter whom I chose to be, more times than not, it entailed blackberries, slate, and the magic of Michaud’s.

Some days, I’d imagine myself to be a gold miner. I’d climb the stairs to Michaud’s, grab a piece of slate, then descend the stairs in my search for gold. It was to be found on the lower wall of our row house, surrounding the basement level. The front of the basement was hidden underground, while the rear, which was at alley level, was encased in huge textured stone to help keep the structure safe in the event of snow drifts. I don’t know what kind of stone it was, but it had flakes of gold and silver throughout. There was a set of green wrought iron stairs leading up to a landing at the kitchen door. The area underneath served as the “cave” in which I mined for gold. I’d imagine myself wearing a wide brimmed brown leather hat, a leather coat and leather pants. I’d take my piece of slate and scrape the stone, releasing metal flakes into the palm of my hand, then round the corner and head back up the stairs to my favorite spot in Michaud’s, where my imagination would and did take me on many journeys.

As a gold miner, I’d craft another bowl out of the blackberry brambles, then set about the task of carefully sifting the flakes of gold and silver from the loosened stone. Then I’d moisten the ball of my finger and separate the gold and silver into two piles. These I would offer in trade to Bravewarrior, into whom I’d once more transform.

Bravewarrior Reflects

By now you may assume I had no human friends. I did – I preferred my imagination over the bickering and jealousy that little girls seem to thrive upon. As the keeper of my imagination, I was free to be who I wanted to be and travel short distances into long ago times.

In retrospect, it must have been the peace, mystique and magic of Michaud’s that has carried me forth into adulthood, bearing the magic of writing and the power of the mind to travel as only a good writer can transcend.

To this day, in the year 2011, some 45 years later, Michaud’s still exists, untainted by Man or machine.

I don’t know if anyone really knows the story behind the mystical lot with the slate foundation, but my imagination tells me there’s a connection between the naming of Iroquois Apartments and that magical place.

Some kids were afraid of Michaud’s back in 1966, but it’s where my soul came to life.

I hope 45 years from now another inspired child is compelled to share his or her story and keep the spirit alive.

Peace, Bravewarrior!



Shauna L Bowling

Refining, Defining or Rhyming

All Rights Reserved

© 2012 Shauna L Bowling

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    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 6 months ago

      You're welcome. Thank you for posting.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 6 months ago from Central Florida

      Robert, at first I thought that may be the direction I'd take, but once I wrote this piece, I decided it's as long as it needs to be.

      Thank you for the comment.

    • Robert Sacchi profile image

      Robert Sacchi 6 months ago

      I enjoyed reading this Hub. I can see many possibilities for a novel. Have you completed your novel?

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 11 months ago from Central Florida

      Nadine, thank you for the awesome comment/compliment!

      Actually, this story isn't fiction at all. Everything about the story is true. The setting, name of lot across the street from where we lived in Philly and the characters I became are all real.

      Not too long ago I Google Mapped our address in Philly, panned around and found Michaud's is still there! I was thrilled to discover that special part of my childhood still exists untainted.

    • Nadine May profile image

      Nadine May 11 months ago from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa

      You writing skills always amazes me. To write an autobiography is often only useful to do for the author and his and her family, but to write your story as fiction, and change names and sometimes places, now that can be just as rewording. Go for it!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 20 months ago from Central Florida

      Audrey, thank you for your awesome comment! When I was young we moved alot. My imagination was my constant companion as the result. This story is absolutely true. Who knew at the time that I'd grow up to embrace writing and use Bravewarrior as my pen name? I certainly didn't!

      I would imagine your mother kept the difficult aspects of her life from you, for reasons of her own. We, as children, can be so selfish. We don't think about what guides peoples actions, we only see the result.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 20 months ago from Nashville Tn.

      Oh, Sha, I dearly love this short story about how you came to be 'Bravewarrior.' A courageous description of the woman you are. I have 'Blackfoot' coursing through my veins on my mother's side. What a woman she was. I didn't appreciate her as I was growing up. Sadly it took a life-time to understand her own difficult life.

      Your friend, your imagination, has honored you. You not only tapped into your imagination, you have glorified this magnificent part of your mind. I hope that I will one day accomplish the 'magic' that you have applied to your wonderful writing.

      Thank you Sha and a very Happy New Year to you.

      Audrey

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Shyron, how exciting that you have access to your ancestral history! Both of my mom's parents were part Cherokee. All I know is one of my great great grandfathers was a Chief. One of my aunts tried to research and document the family tree but somewhere along the line a link was dropped and she couldn't complete it. Sad.

      I'm glad you enjoyed this and can relate to it. It's really cool that you found genuine arrow heads in your youth. Do you still have any of them?

    • Shyron E Shenko profile image

      Shyron E Shenko 2 years ago from Texas

      Sha, I can relate to this as we my cousins, brothers and I played in the woods and used bow and arrows we found many arrow heads and I too am part Cherokee. My great, great grandmother was in the trail of tears and I found her Dawes Roll number that allowed some of my cousins to get scholarships, to universities.

      I find this inspiring and interesting, I too believe in the magic from the Cherokee blood that flows in my veins, and I can understand.

      thumb up, UABI and shared.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Al, your comment (and assessment) means the world to me. Hopefully I'll get back to writing soon. Right now I have a bunch of other life stuff that needs to take the front seat for a while.

      Thanx for your support. Much appreciated!

    • word55 profile image

      Word 2 years ago from Chicago

      Wow, I'm learning a lot about you. I see why you care so much for the environment. Very well written and portrayed. You are quite creative. I like that in you. Keep it up and voted up!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Akriti!

    • Akriti Mattu profile image

      Akriti Mattu 2 years ago from Shimla, India

      Excellent post.

      Voted up.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Liz. My imagination was free to roam in the lot in front of our house. I'd go there pretty much every day. I can still see it in my mind as clear as if it were yesterday.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 2 years ago from Oakley, CA

      Wow, Shauna! This was an amazing trip down memory lane. You described it so well, I could imagine playing there myself!

      What a great time you had in that place. I love your line of, "...travel short distances into long ago times." What a magical description!

      Voted up ++

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      I agree, John. It would require too much to expand this into a novel. After posting it and letting time give me the answer, I've determined this piece is what it was meant to be: the explanation of how I chose my pen name.

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Yes Shauna, I think it's fine just as it is. I was wondering what aspects you would keep as fact and what introduce as fiction...probably changing names etc.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      John, at first I thought it could morph into a novel. Now I'm not so sure. I'm not prepared to write an autobiography and that's what it would have to be, I think. I kinda like it as a stand alone. What do you think?

    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      I just came across this Shauna, I guess Audrey must have shared it. I thoroughly enjoyed this story from your childhood. I had a lot of make believe adventures as a child but more so in the company of others than alone. I have always enjoyed my alone time however, especially now as it gives me uninterrupted time to write. Well written and voted up. Is it still going to become the basis for a novel?

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Audrey, I find that now I'm in my twilight years, I've reverted to being on my own and resorting to my imagination. I went through a period in my early twenties where I needed lots of people around me. I think I just needed to validate who I am. However, looking back, being able to provide my own entertainment has led me to be a strong woman who can depend on herself. There's a downside, too: letting others in is not so easy.

      Thank you for reading and relating. I greatly appreciate your input.

    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 2 years ago from California

      I love this narrative--it so reminds me of my own childhood--exploring on my own and sometimes with friends, but mostly on my own--I often returned with all kinds of treasures!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Then let's make up for lost time and become friends now, Angela!

    • SheGetsCreative profile image

      Angela F 2 years ago from Seattle, WA

      You and I could have been friends/co-conspirators as kids...truly. :)

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 2 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you peachpurple. I love lions!

    • peachpurple profile image

      peachy 2 years ago from Home Sweet Home

      you sound very brave like a lion to me, nice to know you

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Barb, those were the good old days. Today's kids have no idea what they're missing!

    • Brite-Ideas profile image

      Barbara Tremblay Cipak 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      I had to read this to find out how you chose this name. Your friend was your imagination and it's that creative mind that lead you to you to your name and being a writer who can reach people on the page and through the internet. Reading about you child play actually makes me miss those innocent times of being outdoors all day, creating, inventing, running, biking.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Aviannovice, sorry to say I've never had either of those products. It's nice you grew up in the woods. Plenty of places to let your imagination run free. Thanx for stopping by!

    • aviannovice profile image

      Deb Hirt 3 years ago from Stillwater, OK

      Sounds like a fantastic place to allow yourself to be who you are. I grew up in the woods of Maine, and later lived in Wilmington, DE, as an adult for a number of years. I had been to Philly several times--I liked the Superior Ravioli Co. and DiBruno's horseradish cheese spread. I really miss that cheese spread...

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Cool!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Cool!

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 3 years ago from West By God

      Thank you, you just gave me another idea to write on my memoirs.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      I love Maryland crabs. We'd have them quite often when we lived in Philly. Sorry, about reiterating the true story thing. It's been a while since I've re-read this story.

      Thanx for stopping by Debra!

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 3 years ago from West By God

      I know it was a true story. You said that in the beginning. I have been to Philly. I grew up in Maryland and we also had blackberries and honeysuckle.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Debra, this is a true story. It's how I spent much of my childhood when we lived in Philly. The blackberries were delicious and so were the honeysuckle. You practically had to hog-tie me to keep me indoors. Even in the winter!

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 3 years ago from West By God

      This is a cool story of imaginable times. I loved how your story flowed in and out of the blackberries and around the slate stone. I like the name Bravewarrior.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Oh, I was wondering what the reference to smile was. Why can't you call me Bravewarrior, Prey?

    • prey profile image

      prey 3 years ago from places you should hope we never meet

      simply, you bring light to me when you write. I however cannot bring myself to call you brave warrior

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      I'm not sure what you mean, prey but thank you!

    • prey profile image

      prey 3 years ago from places you should hope we never meet

      love the smile, more of us should act and write with one

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you, Thelma. Right now I'm working on The Gifts of Faith (11 chapters written so far and posted on HP). That will become a novel, although right now it's slow going.

      One day I hope to get back to Bravewarrior. I'm not sure which direction I want it to take, which is another reason I haven't done anything with it. It'll hit me one day and then I'll roll with it!

    • Thelma Alberts profile image

      Thelma Alberts 3 years ago from Germany

      What a very interesting story! I would love to continue reading when you have published this novel. It´s good to know how you became a bravewarrior. This would definitely be a prelude of your novel. Thanks for sharing.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Rachael, I'm not familiar with those parts of Philly. But it was so long ago when I lived there, I may know them and just don't realize it. I'm glad you're finally settling down. Moving a lot takes a toll after a while. I moved a lot too, but I've been in Florida now since 1976. I don't plan on going anywhere!

    • RachaelOhalloran profile image

      Rachael O'Halloran 3 years ago from United States

      bravewarrior, this was a very interesting and compelling story. It is always interesting to me to hear how writers choose their names, or as life would have it, how names are chosen for them.

      I was reading over the comments and I also have a Philly connection. I lived there in my teen years when we moved from Virginia to Philly from 1960 to 1975. We lived at F & the Blvd, then moved to Holme Ave down the street from Nazareth Hospital. My husband is from Our Lady of Angels parish around 50th & Master St in West Philly. When we married, his assignment was moved to NJ, then NYC, and the traveling never stopped. We went to Florida for 1 yr then back to Philly from 1981 to 1990. We lived at Grant & Academy near the NE Airport. I had an aunt who lived in Wynnwood, but she died 2 years ago so now there is no family left in Philly at all. In 1990 we went to Delaware and then out to CA for a few years, to Las Vegas, NV, then Santa Fe, NM. I’ll stop there. We moved a lot. My father worked for the government for a number of years before going private sector. My husband worked for a different branch of the government. Whenever the job moved them, we were offered the chance to move or stay. It was better to move the whole family.

      We are moving back East at the end of this month to Virginia and will split time between there and Florida to be near our children and grandchildren. It will be our last move, we are sure. Anyway, I don’t know if you know those areas of Philly or not, they’re a little farther away from your neighborhood. I enjoyed reading your story and the comments here too. lol

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Marlene, I'd bet that many military brats had to go inside themselves in order to combat the loneliness. In the end, we are resilient human beings. That has served me well in my adulthood.

      I'm glad you related to this and that you enjoyed the read. Thank you.

    • MarleneB profile image

      Marlene Bertrand 3 years ago from Northern California, USA

      This is really interesting and "deep". As an army brat myself, I can truly relate to some of your experiences. When I was a child, I was my own best friend and my imagination was quite vivid. I wrote a lot back then. Thanks, bravewarrior, for sharing your story. I enjoyed reading it.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Crystal, I'm sure it has factored into who you are whether you realize it or not.

    • Crystal Tatum profile image

      Crystal Tatum 3 years ago from Georgia

      I very much understand living in the imagination as a child. And I too have Cherokee blood - you've got me thinking about exactly what that means and how it has factored in the development of my personality and spirit. Well done Brave Warrior!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      You're too funny, Made. I was pulling your leg, of course! :-)

    • Made profile image

      Madeleine Salin 3 years ago from Finland

      No, they never won. Of course I was the winner, and it was always the same poor, little girl in last place. :)

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Made, did your imaginary friends ever win the competitions? :-) I lived outside when I was a kid. Trying to keep me indoors was like putting a cat in a cage!

    • Made profile image

      Madeleine Salin 3 years ago from Finland

      I can relate to this hub. I used my imagination all the time as a child. In the winter I hade skiiing competition with my three imaginary friends. I loved spending time in the woods that surrounded our house...

      It's very interesting to read your story and how you got your name, bravewarrior. Wonderful hub!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Linda, you are so right. Will it be written in my white man's time? Hmm... something to think about. We shall see!

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 3 years ago from Minnesota

      I understand Shauna that timing is everything, especially when writing an autobiography. You will be lead by warrior guides as to when and how. When it is time, I will be excited to read it. Hugs :-)

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Linda, I have let this one fall by the wayside in favor of The Gifts of Faith. You can find that ongoing short story here on HP. I do hope to get back to How I Became Bravewarrior, I just don't know where I want the story to pick up from yet. It will be an autobiography. Not sure I'm ready to go there just yet.

    • Minnetonka Twin profile image

      Linda Rogers 3 years ago from Minnesota

      Hi bravewarrior-what a wonderful imagination and great adventures you had at Michaud's. Times sure have changed with all the technology. I don't think kids get to use that imagination piece the way we did as kids. By the way, I never liked hanging out with gossipy girls either-you and I would have had a blast together. Thanks for sharing your story of how you became brave warrior. I could definitely see this becoming a novel. Hope you've continued the adventures.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Mary, who knew my experience at Michaud's would develop into my pen name as a writer! It's really pretty cool when I think about it. Had I known I would have taken my Kodak Instamatic with me into my imaginary life. But then, warriors and miners more didn't carry cameras with them, did they?

      I'll have to expound on this one of these days. I've thought about it - just not sure which direction I want it to take. Then again, when I write the direction seems to take on a life of its own.

      I'm glad you like this and commented. I will definitely have to revisit this story and carry it forward.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Crafty, I googled my old neighborhood not too long ago. It was one of those sites that gave you a live view and you can pan the camera around. I was pleased to see Michaud's is still as it was when I was a kid. Now I'm convinced more than ever that the area is some kind of Native American sacred ground. Either that or the spirits won't allow anyone to build on it. I'm relieved it still lives the way it did so many years ago.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 3 years ago from Central Florida

      Gail, we were fortunate to grow up in the time we did. Imagination and exploring is what it was all about. As long as I was home before dark, all was ok. And that was when we lived in Philly! Times have changed. I'm thankful for the use of my imagination. You have to know how to use it in order to become a writer, right?

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 3 years ago from New York

      Okay, where do I start? First off I guess, definitely a book! With a captivating story like this touching just a tiny spot in your life I know an autobiography would be great, or a novel if you prefer anonymity ;) Your writing style is easy to read, interesting, and just flows...all good things for a book. Your story was interesting and relate-able, at least for those of us who remember "playing outside" and "using our imaginations".

      Certainly would have 'called on you' to play in that field or anywhere!

      What a wonderful way you came upon your "name" here! Looking forward to learning more.

      Voted all but funny, and sharing. Since your pictures aren't originals I'm pinning too.

    • CraftytotheCore profile image

      CraftytotheCore 3 years ago

      What an awesome story. Michaud's sounds a lot like the field by my home when I was a child. It was an empty field and every year the carnival would come. Until a plane crashed in it. From then on, it was a sad place, so the town built a park and a sports field. It's amazing now.

    • Happyboomernurse profile image

      Gail Sobotkin 3 years ago from South Carolina

      Shauna,

      This was totally captivating and brought back so many fond memories of my own imaginative play as a young child. I was not a military brat but my family moved frequently so I knew how to keep myself entertained in between making new friends, and also played with my younger brother a lot.

      Children of today aren't allowed the freedom to roam and explore their neighborhoods because the parents are too afraid for their safety but that's a terrible loss because I believe kids are meant to be explorers. It stimulates their imaginations and helps develop their brains.

      Am voting this story up across the board except for funny and sharing.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Welcome to my world, Liz! :-)

    • epbooks profile image

      Elizabeth Parker 4 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      I had always been meaning to ask about bravewarrior name and now I know. What an awesome story. I've always had a vivid imagination as well and would create adventures in the woods behind our house. So nice to learn this about you!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Kim, thank you so much. Hopefully I can spare some time from earning a living to do just that!

    • ocfireflies profile image

      ocfireflies 4 years ago from North Carolina

      bravewarrior,

      I can definitely see how your piece could operate as a prelude to a novel. While my childhood was not in the same place as where your childhood took place, I feel a kindred spirit. Wishing you the time you need to write your novel.

      Best Always,

      Kim

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Mike, you are so right. Most kids today can't even spell imagination, let alone know how to cultivate it! You bring up a very good point that I never thought about until now. If kids can't learn to dream when they are young, what do they have to strive for as they grow older?

      I'm tickled that you're rolling around my site. I've been 'tweaking' so more of my hubs make the rotation gamut.

      Peace!

    • Mr Archer profile image

      Mr Archer 4 years ago from Missouri

      Cheyenne, this is a wonderful read and insight into using our imagination as children. I too had a "patch of woods" across the street from where I lived. In it lived all manner of beasties, including fish! I built forst, hunted with my homemade bow and arrows, and generally lived by the imagination. It is sad that so many of today's children seem to be lacking in that; what will become of them as adults? If one does not learn how to dream young, how will one chase dreams when older?

      Peace be with you, Cheyenne. Good hunting and fair winds.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Flourish, that's my thinking. I just need to figure out where to start!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 4 years ago from USA

      Compelling, inspirational, full of intrigue. The reader just wonders what direction this is taking. A novel.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you Anjili. I'm seriously considering expanding this into a novel. I just need to figure out which direction I want it to take.

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      Anjili 4 years ago from planet earth, a humanoid

      It is great to know your origin. Your life story could fill a whole novel. Keep up with the good work. Voted up and interesting

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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Kim, I remember the mothers calling for the kids to come home for a meal also. What magical times they were! Now we pick up the cell phone. WTF?

      I didn't even include the princess I would pretend to be with a towel wrapped around my hips and another on my head as I danced to the music in my head!

      Oh, the joys of Imagination! Those who imagine become writers and artists. Life is sweet!

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      இڿڰۣ-- кιмвєяℓєу 4 years ago from Niagara Region, Canada

      Oh, Shauna. I love the nostalgia of this piece. A much simpler time it seems compared to now; I remember playing until the streetlights came on, skipping rope or hopscotch, loved listening to all the mother's calling out that it was supper time, or being so absorbed and playing with "Imagination" that the time would seem to fly by. You allowed me to revisit my childhood as well and it brought a smile to my face. Thanks.

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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Anna, it was a great time. That part of Philly offered many natural tools to spark my imagination.

      Dream On, we're lucky to have such wonderful chilhood memories, aren't we?

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      DREAM ON 4 years ago

      I loved your story so interesting and filled with endless adventure.Growing up during the summer until school started again we often amused ourselves walking,playing with fake guns where we made all the sound effects no bullets,Later we were lucky to have squirt and cap guns. Playing tag until you dropped,then you walked to the beach for a swim to cool off and drank water from a water bubbler because we had no money.You brought back so many memories wow what good times we had.

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      Anna Haven 4 years ago from Scotland

      Hi bravewarrior, what a great story, it sounds like it should be a book. I loved how the blackberries became part of whatever role you were in. I just wish I had been there to play, I would have loved it!

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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Clara, thank you for reading. Yes, what would today's youth do without their gadgets?

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      Clara Kish 4 years ago from Mt. Perry. Ohio

      Thank you ,Bravewarrior, for ,your wonderful story,yes, it will make an interesting book and I am sure many people would enjoy it . I don't know about the young ones but at least they would know that we had a life before all of the modern gadgets came along.You know ,the ones they think they can't live without.The best to you . Clara

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      Shauna L Bowling 4 years ago from Central Florida

      Audrey, thank you so much for the comment. Those times in Philly hold wonderful memories for me. I miss the blackberry trees!

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      Audrey Hunt 4 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      Hello Bravewarrior. This is marvelous. Such a touching story. Your writing flows making an easy read. I'm glad you've shared these good times. I have "blackfoot" running through my veins. The best of times is still to come.

      Only one way to rate this marvelous hub. Up, across and sharing!

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      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Poet, I appreciate your comment. I lived the adventures and it was the start of my emotional independence! They were good times and the first day of the rest of my life!

    • TheAveragePoet profile image

      TheAveragePoet 5 years ago from Here and there.

      A most engaging and empowering tale, bravewarrior. Thank you for sharing your story, I enjoyed the adventures.

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Mmmmmmmm!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Big smiles coming from my heart, Simba!

    • Simba73 profile image

      Simba73 5 years ago from UK

      that was following ya Lol

    • Simba73 profile image

      Simba73 5 years ago from UK

      Gotta be a glitch I just checked and I'm llowing ya !! Muuahhh !!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Muuuaaahhhh! That's cyber talk for blowing you a kiss, Simba!

    • bravewarrior profile image
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      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      I'm beginning to have a crush on you, Simba! You've put a smile on my face since you first found my corner! (I haven't seen you in my followers. Is that another HP glitch?)

    • Simba73 profile image

      Simba73 5 years ago from UK

      Oh yeah I'm voting up !!!

    • Simba73 profile image

      Simba73 5 years ago from UK

      Great write here, thanks for guiding me to it, you seem to be like the kind of girl I would want to play with when I was a kid, imagination make so much better games as a kid :)

      I'll post a pic of when I was a kid on my page I was always the Indian too !!!

      Simba

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      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Let me know what you find out, Rachel. I did an address search, one of those live cam things, just before I wrote this and it looks like it's still there. I went to St. Matthias Catholic School in Bala Cynwyd.

      If you get by the lot, please send me a picture! I lived right across the street at 4500 Overbrook Avenue.

      Exciting! Thank you.

    • Farmer Rachel profile image

      Rachel Koski 5 years ago from Minnesota

      I really loved this hub. I actually grew up right outside SW Philly, and while in high school I worked at a big hospital on City Line Ave (not very long ago, actually!). My dad grew up in Darby in the 50s and 60s - I should ask him if he ever got out to Bala Cynwyd area. I'll have to go take a look for the lot, see if it's still there. Voted this one up etc., loved reading it!

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      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      I actually touched Davy Jones and went home screaming, "I"ll never wash this hand again!" My mother thought I was sooooo dramatic! Maybe so, but hey, how many 6th grade Catholic school girls can claim fame to that????

      K. I'm making myself a note: Monkees hub!

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      Maria Jordan 5 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      I most certainly do remember Jerry Blavit... my brother was so very into him... (was he the Geetor with the Heater...?) Pretty sure that is who I listen to still sometimes on XPN (our Penn Public radio station) on Saturday nights.

      Now I would have loved to have seen the Monkees with you. Oh how I loved them, especially Davey (RIP).

      A hub would be so cool, girlfriend. I hope you consider it.

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      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Wow, Maria! Norristown???? Yeah, man! You know City Line Avenue? Lordy. Do you remember the Jerry Blavit show? I can tell a story about that. His producer was my friend's step dad. They lived on our street, Overbrook Avenue. I was given free passes to see The Monkees. OMG! That's a story and probably a hub!

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      Maria Jordan 5 years ago from Jeffersonville PA

      Oh what a profound introduction to my new friend.

      Your writing is easy to read, it flows with a natural rhythm and a beauitful sense of remembrance. I love the idea of this leading to a published book, it has all the elements.

      The comment stream show how you touch the reader. How interesting to learn more about Ghost/ his name... because of your sharing the same with us.

      Voted UP & UABI. Oh, I was right... you 'are' cool! Hugs, Maria

      PS... Only 4 years younger than you... we coulda bumped heads back then as I grew up on the other side of City Line Avenue in Norristown.

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      Shauna L Bowling 5 years ago from Central Florida

      Thank you so much for your advice and kind comment, B. Coming from an accomplished writer such as yourself, this means a great deal to me and further encourages me to follow the path to my dream!

      Thank you for the honorable follow. I look forward to learning from and getting to know you!

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      Brian Leekley 5 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

      Bravewarrior, I much enjoyed this excellent memoir essay.

      A good book on creative nonfiction (also called narrative nonfiction) that I recommend is The Fourth Genre: Contemporary Writers of/on Creative Nonfiction, [edited by] Robert L. Root and Michael Steinberg. (I have the second edition, a copy from the Salvation Army.) Used copies are listed at alibris.com for 99c plus shipping, and a public or university library in your area probably has it. Part One has examples; in Part Two writers discuss the genre; in Part Three writers discuss how they created a particular work. You're good at creative nonfiction, and I look forward to seeing more by you.

      Up, Useful, Interesting, Beautiful, and shared.

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      Joshua Zerbini 5 years ago from Pennsylvania

      Hehe, yes sharing, and now that I am back sharing again! :)

      P.S. You should check out my Hub on KUBB, it is an awesome outdoor game for all ages, think you would enjoy it :)