It has taken me several weeks to make my way through Chapter 6 to Chapter 7. I’m still not entirely happy with 6 and think that I’ll have to return and make more revisions after slogging through the remainder of the story.
Chapter 7 begins in October of 1913. George Belt enters 10th Grade. He and his pals have been playing pickup basketball in the barn gym and at Shorty Zimmerman’s house since their Youth League play ended the previous spring. Ivan Stetler replaced Delmar Stephens as the basketball coach of the League after a hostile encounter between the two men during a practice session. Basketball was much more fun under the tutelage of Ivan than under the cranky and nitpicking dictatorship of Stephens.
Ivan has seemingly been able to cope with his debilitating leg injury. He uses a cane, has a pronounced limp, and is doomed to a life without active participation in athletics. We’ll see how the rest of his days play out.
George and his friends still can’t play on a school team since the township trustee, who governs nearly aspect of the township school system, won’t allow school sponsored teams. Perhaps this fellow can somehow be convinced to change his mind. If he doesn’t, this story will end prematurely and I’ll have to start another project.
The pursuit of basketball by the residents of the town of Stillwater will be complicated by events they apparently cannot control. They will begin to think that Providence has weighed in against basketball as a passion and pastime for their little town. If only they knew what sort of difficulties that sport and the emotions it evokes will render in the months to come . . .