5:00 a.m. would hit & my alarm would go off.
I looked at my clock and made a groan. It was 5:00 already! It was time. I forced myself out of bed so I could help my brother fold newspapers. We would always deliver them early in the hopes of not seeing anyone we knew.
As we wrapped them up in the rubber band, we talked. Then, we gathered our candy, bags & headed out. The dark, cold chill would hit us as soon as we exited the house.
Our route was on the next street so we didn’t have to walk far. We were about 12 and 14. Our tradition was to put whichever candy we chose into our mouths at the corner, right before we separated. Him on one side, I on the other. We would try to compete to see who got done faster. To this day, I still believe I had more houses than him. He always beat me. Always. Though, it was all in fun.
The drive was our next place to go. Those were his houses. Then, as we got further down, I began delivering. You see, we took turns. Those were good times with my brother. On Sundays, my younger brother would accompany us. One week he would help me and the next time he would assist my brother. It was a trade-off.
We got paid. We were reliable. We would always have the papers on time, right location. The worst was collecting money from houses. There were times when they didn’t have the money & that meant we had to come back. Again. That was the worst because it was in the daylight.
My brother & I liked the dark so no one could see us. We were a little embarrassed to be considered “paper carriers.” It wasn’t one of the coolest jobs, but we accepted it. We made do with it.
Sometimes I miss those days. It’s sad to think that those years are gone, but it wasn’t all bad. My brother & I got closer at the time. We shared that job & did very well. When we had to quit, our manager was very disappointed because we were such a good team.
Those were the paper carrying days…