New York Years "Hospital"


That first year in the United States was a tough one for us physically. Not only did we get chicken pox and mumps, we also had something like whooping cough. The doctor gave us pints of cough syrup. I also had a sty on my eye. It swelled up so much, my eyelid was almost shut. I couldn't wait for it to come to a head and pop. It was hard enough making friends without looking like a monster!

I developed a urinary problem and needed to be hospitalized. Not having a TV at home, I watched it from when the stations came on the air (around 6 AM) to the playing of the National Anthem (at midnight) and the colored test pattern came on. (How many of you remember that?) I enjoyed making the bed go up and down and having sherbet for the first time.

Pastor Heintz visited me and gave me a copy of Little Pilgrim's Progress. I loved it and still have it, although I have bought various copies later of Pilgrim's Progress. My father told us the story often, either using a flannel-graph set, or reading the book to us. Since then, I've read the adult version (the first chapter in verse and notations in the margin) and also read his biography and his blind daughter's biography.

That was my first introduction to an allegory. The undeveloped writer in me loved the symbolism and subtle meanings of the different characters and places. I still think of the words "Delectable Mountains" when I see a view of a long valley from a high spot. Pilgrim's Progress is a book every person should read sometime.

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