Tag Archives: Life during the great depression.

How Ivan and Dora Met

1 Apr

My Take

DiVoran Lites

 

Dora’s: Dad, her Aunt, Dora herself, her mother and her grandmother circa 1920.

 

Written by Dora

Ivan was born in Hidalgo Illinois in June1915. I was born in Pueblo, Colorado in January 1916. We met as children in Canon City, Colorado when our families were neighbors. Also, we played together at Redmond’s, a childhood friend who was English.

Many years later, on April 25, 1930, when we were fourteen,  Ivan’s parents, Ira and Marie Bowers and my parents, Roger and Mabel Bedell took us to the Fireman’s Ball in the Annex over Woolworth’s.

I made the floor-length pale-green dress in home economics class. It had a sash that tied into a big  bow in back. When I put it on I felt shiny and beautiful, and to me, Ivan’s curly dark hair and mischievous blue eyes looked like a prince.  Even though years would pass and we’d both date other people, I fell in love with him that night.

In my high school years,I lived on a farm with an apple orchard with Mother, Dad, and my sister Judy, who had been born when I was eleven. She was born because I prayed for a little sister. Sometimes our brother, Smithy and his wife Lena and their son Roger, would come to visit. From time to time, relatives came to stay because the Great Depression had left them jobless and homeless. Because we raised much of our own food, and my dad had a job as the manager of the Canon City Gas Company, so no one ever went hungry. We housed the relatives in the little house out back. and they helped with the work.

For bathing,we brought in buckets of water from the cistern outside. We filled the reservoir on the stove and heated the water. Then we ladled and poured the water into a galvanized washtub in the middle of the kitchen floor and were ready for the first bather. Each of us bathed in turn according to seniority. By the time the youngest bathed, the water was cold and a sort of scum had risen to the top. Although getting the bath water ready may have taken a long time, the actual bathing was quick.

Ivan’s family had an indoor bathroom in their house on Main Street. In fact, their plumbing included a shampoo sink for Marie’s beauty shop. Later Ira worked at the Colorado State Penitentiary as a guard. He went to the pen at five or six AM every workday morning. Wearing a spiffy guard’s uniform that we all admired. He saw a lot of criminals come and go and retired after twenty-six years,

Marie remembered going out to eat and receiving extra courteous treatment from the criminal bosses who might happen to also be dining out that night. They treated the guards and their families well and expected themselves and their families in prison to be treated well in return.

In May 1934, the farmer’s daughter, Dora, and the prison guard’s son, Ivan went to the Canon City High School Senior banquet. We didn’t go with the people we were dating because they weren’t finishing high school and weren’t allowed, but after the banquet, I went to the dance with Harold and Ivan took a girl named Helen. Ivan and were just good friends at the time, or so we thought.

 

Author, Poet and Artist

DiVoran has been writing for most of her life. Her first attempt at a story was when she was seven years old and her mother got a new typewriter. DiVoran got to use it and when her dad saw her writing he asked what she was writing about. DiVoran answered that she was writing the story of her life. Her dad’s only comment was, “Well, it’s going to be a very short story.” After most of a lifetime of writing and helping other writers, DiVoran finally launched her own dream which was to write a novel of her own. She now has her Florida Springs trilogy and her novel, a Christian Western Romance, Go West available on Amazon. When speaking about her road to publication, she gives thanks to the Lord for all the people who helped her grow and learn.  She says, “I could never have done it by myself, but when I got going everything fell beautifully into place, and I was glad I had started on my dream.”

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