I came to this town the summer between second and third grades, a town like Lake Wobegone, Lutherans and Catholics only much smaller. We moved into a trailer next to a house my father had built until this house was ready for us to live there. My mother introduced me to a boy my age, who was the son of a mother she knew, and took me over there to play. He lived 'up-town' right close to Main Street.
We each had bikes, so at some point we rode around town. We were heading
north toward the lake, down Augustana Avenue, when riding along a grassy,
steep almost vertical bluff on our left, we were attacked with rocks by bunch of boys our age. I got off my bike but there were no throwable stones around. The road was black-top where they sprinkle the surface with pea gravel and with traffic, it all ends up in furrows along the side of the road. I grabbed handfuls of pea gravel and gave them splattering grapeshot at close range. Couldn't miss.
My friend did the same and we drove them up the bluff, where they taunted us,
but they were the one's that had run.
I learned later that this was the Craig Hegle Gang. There were two gangs in town, of about sixteen boys and three girls, all about the same age, at this time third grade. There was also the four year older generation of four boys, who seemed like giants to me, and who were of nineteen hundred and forties culture. They flew gasoline powered model balsa-wood air-planes, on strings around and around, and sometimes had dog-fights, chasing paper-mache tails tied onto the planes.
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