"I was eight years old and running with a dime in my hand
Into the bus stop to pick up a paper for my old man
I'd sit on his lap in that big old Buick and steer as we drove through town
He'd tousle my hair and say son take a good look around this is your hometown."
Throughout our lives, chances are we will move from one location to another. Some will move more than others, and there are some who will live in the same house for their entire life. I have moved several times, but nothing like my wife has experienced.
For the majority of my youth, Chesterfield, Missouri was my turf…literally. When you grew up in the St. Louis area, you really didn't venture too far away from your home base. Sure we would go to the mall and places within a few miles from home, but nothing like we experience in Chicago where kids will take the train to the city, go to the beach or some other destination, and then head back to the community where you live.
Home was always a safe place. We knew as long as we were able to pull into the driveway, there would always be someone to greet us. However, when you move, or you leave the nest, a part of you stays. Even though I will likely never go back to my childhood home, I am funny about that, it's likely I will read about it in "Snap. Shot." It seems so much easier and less intrusive that way. Weird? Of course, that's me.
Today we live in a time when connecting with those who you grew up with is a simple click of a few keys. It's easy to catch up on Facebook or other social media. Many people I am in touch with I have not seen in a while…rather, decades.
In September, a number of my fraternity brothers will be reuniting in Colorado. Reunions are interesting; certainly since many of us lived in the same house for 2 to 4 years, we know (or at least think we remember) the guys who went from strangers to brothers. But how have they changed in 30-something years? In my mind they are likely the same as they were when we shook hands and said, "Have a good life" all those years ago. There really was no way to remain in touch unless we lived in the same city or were wealthy enough to spend a lot of money on "long distance" phone calls. Again, this should be interesting.
Going back to the 'hood is a struggle; I know it will always bring back memories—some good, some not as good—but in the end, bringing the memories of old back to the forefront, is always worth it. I just need to prepare for it.
The photo above was taken recently at the cemetery where many of my family members now reside; my parents, grandparents, aunt and uncle (as well as a fraternity brother) all call this neighborhood home. There is one thing I do know, every time I am scheduled to venture back to my home town—this is one "hood" I will always put on the "to visit" list.
Thanks for stopping by.