Iremember hearing the sound of a familiar bell, not just any bell, but the bike bell that belonged to Mr. Put-Put. Mr. Put-Put was the name we gave to the most popular man in the neighborhood. He was an elderly handicapped gentleman who had rigged up a motorized three-wheel bike with a black icebox on the back. He slowly rode through the neighborhood ringing his bell and selling only two items, Popsicles and Fudgesicles, for a nickel.
We all knew when we heard the sound of that distant bell Mr. Put-Put was coming. Children clutching their money gathered at his many stops.
This walk down memory lane is to emphasize an article in the Sun Herald on June 19 concerning Ocean Springs, which does not allow ice cream trucks. That sounds so un-American. Children's safety should always be a parent's first concern, whether it's bike riding, fireworks, trick or treating or ice cream trucks. The ice cream truck I remembered just "strolled" though neighborhoods and stopped frequently to serve happy children a treat on a hot muggy day.
We also had a regular colorful ice cream truck decorated with pictures of a larger assortment of ice cream goodies that came along with its distinct children's "sing song" music. Even today when I hear the sound of an ice cream truck, I stop, listen and reminisce about that special time in my life when I was a child.
Let's make this a memory that our youngsters will have as they grow and think back on those days when that simple sound brought a smile to their lips and cool fun to their tummies.
Come on, Ocean Springs, everyone loves the ice cream man.