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Torpedoed Tanker

STATE OF FLORIDA ARCHIVES - PHOTO
 

THE TANKER GULFLAND SETS ON THE BOTTOM AT HOBE SOUND, FLORIDA
HOW CLOSE WAS CLOSE - THIS IS JUST A HULK - BURNED TO WATERLINE
TORPEDOED BY A GERMAN U-BOAT IN THE 1940s

One memorable morning ride to the beach was with my buddy Howard Bell and a group of girls that Howard knew. They were Catholic girls from St. Mary's and did not go to school with us. Howard, a Catholic, did not go to the Catholic School, but Howard knew all the girls that a fellow needed to know that lived in North Miami. On this trip to the beach there was one girl, in this bunch of bicycling beauties that was a knockout. I had never seen her before but I sure wanted- to see her again.

Howard Bell, Don Stone

The amazing thing was that she had asked me to go bike riding after dinner that night. Bicycling in the early evening was an ordinary thing in those days and anything that could be done in a car could be done better at the vista on the bay at the east end of 123rd Street or on the a grassy knolls along the waters edge at the west end of 125th Street at Biscayne canal. There was no bridge there in 1944. If you wanted to go over to the west side, it had to be by West Dixie Highway and 119th Street. The details on the grassy knoll action, comes not as an ardent participant but as an observant kid with an average desire but too inexperienced to really live the life at the moment. Naturally, I'm speaking of picnicking, bird watching, or other activities that may relate to automobile arrangements. Lazing on the water's edge was not only better but also was much more comfortable than a congested car. Can you imagine a gaggle of old guys in a Model-A with their field glasses checking out the last of the pelicans at 123rd and the bay?

If it had been one with a rumble seat, then the fellows in the rear would have had an extreme advantage. Some folks even double dated in rumble-seated cars. Consider also, double dating in a rumble seat, Heaven forbid! Smooching in a rumble seat was very public and unless you were a pretzel you could get leg cramps. Why do I mention rumble seats? Well, lot of fellows had old cars with the rumble seat because they were cheaper but the real point is that dating on bikes was what I started to tell you about and bikes eliminate a lot of problems; ask any environmentalist today.

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