It was the top of the world. Standing on the tarred roof of the garage on Woodland Shores Rd behind the backboard above the car's entrance. Beside me was a pile of pinecones gathered for a hour or more before climbing the slanting back side of the garage with a bucket full in one hand. It was a tough climb having to finagle the bucket while stooped and holding on to the slanting wall, inching up step by step. It seemed hours to reach the crenulated tin roof as we held on to the edge with one hand and the other pulling the bucket up then putting it at the edge and pulling it up and onto the roof. For a little kid that was hard work especially when the trips up and down were so numerous finding the perfect pinecones.Several of us were searching. With each bucketful we'd inch up the side of the back wall and lay our cones at the backboard in preparation. At last we decided it was enough. The sun had reached the 12 noon height which signaled the attack. We stood behind our protection, the plywood board that used to hold a basketball hoop long removed. In front of us there emerged a small army--2 or 3 kids--bearing shields of garbage can lids, and missiles, cut tree limbs straight and narrow, and bags of pinecones attached at their sides. The first lance cracked against the backboard bouncing back to the ground. The 3 of us popped up and let fly our perfect pinecones. Each one glanced away from our targets by a side action of shields. The resounding pings were proof of their defensive capability. We ducked as lances flew up and hit the backboard with harsh cracks. In unison we arose from our crouching positions and let loose a barrage of "grenades."
Ping! Ping! Pock!
We heard the scream from our hiding positions. I peaked over to see a small hand rubbing a bloody head. The green pinecones were deadly with their sharp pineapple like needles.
"I'm bleeding! Aaaaah! I'm bleeding!" he screamed.
"Crybaby!" we yelled back.
"Oh Yeah!" we heard from below.
"Yeah! You're a crybaby!" we shouted back.
Whap! Whap! Thonk! Crack!
How they could throw so many so fast we didn't know because we weren't going to chance a look. Whack! Whack! tap-tap-tappity-tap. They let loose with all their lances and a bevy of pine cones. When no more were coming we stood and began to throw everything we had as quickly as possible. There was a whir of missiles crisscrossing in the air. The backboard was cracking with hits constantly. The ping of "grenades" deflected by shields of tin became a musical refrain until we all ran out of ammo.
"Wow! Pretty good battle! We won!" we shouted.”
"Did not!" they shouted back.
"We'll see tomorrow!"
"Remember tomorrow we're on the ground and you guys are up here!" "OK! We'll be ready!"
"Rickey! R---! L---! What are you doing on top of the garage?" my mother yelled.
"You get down this minute. How many times have you children been told not to get on the roof of the garage?" "UH....
" Down! Now!"
We ran to the back of the roof and slid down the slanted wall. When we got to the front, there was a pile of sticks, pinecones, and garbage tin covers lying everywhere.
"Clean up that mess and get yourselves inside. Lunch is ready.”