Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Pondering life

Do you ever go back to a place you once lived and feel weird? If you've lived in the same place all of your life you may not know what I am talking about.

I was born in Erie (actually a little town called Girard outside of Erie), Pennsylvania. I lived there until I was 10. My dad got tired of the snow, tired of working in steel and zinc, tired of the unions, and quit his job and moved us to Texas. When I go back to Pennsylvania, I can't help but remember the feelings of a good childhood. A happy time playing in the woods, eating berries off the wild bushes, climbing trees, stealing grapes from the grape farm up the hill, playing in the snow, sled riding down the "big hill".

We moved to Waco, Texas when I was 10. When I go there, I remember a crappy time. When I was a teenager my mom had breast cancer, my dad had a hard time finding work, my sister went through a rough time. Moving sucked, losing my friends, and I was shy so I had a hard time making new ones. But I also remember my first boyfriend, meeting my husband (we went to the same high school), "cruising the valley" with friends, climbing the fence to sneak into the public pool at midnight to skinnydip with my boyfriend, etc. The strange thing is, just going to the town brings back all of these weird feelings. All at once, not one at a time as I reminisce. Just setting foot in the town I start feeling everything at once.

I'm not the same person I was in Pennsylvania, I'm not the same person I was in Waco. I've grown. Things are different. Who WAS that girl, anyway?

Question: How many places have you lived, and do you feel strange going back to visit?

12 comments:

Eyes said...

I went back to my hometown yesterday. On the drive -- which I used to make in reverse, I was flooded with memory after memory. I went to visit my childhood best friend.

While I had good memories, I was so happy to go back to where I live now (100 miles away). I love it here way better. It is home now, special and warm.

I wasn't able to drive past my old house. I couldn't stomach it. I want it to remain as it was when I was last living there -- in my memory.

Elle said...

I left my hometown for good when I went to college. Bad times. I'll share someday. I have been reunited with a friend from HS who left as well under bad circumstances. It has been incredibly healing. It's nice when someone can remind you of the good memories as the bad ones seem to take up all the room.

cesca said...

As my dad was in the army, we moved every two years, so I was so used to making new friends and settling into a new place as a kid. It was just NORMAL.

However, since I was 16 I've been in this one city that I'm in now (apart from 1 year travelling overseas) so I kind of call it my "home town" now. I don't want to move at all, but I know that if I did, I could handle the change.

angela marie said...

It feels 'weird' going to the town where I grew up. But I never really moved far away. I've always lived in the same state. When I run into people in my old hometown, I tend to judge. Like they didn't move on. Not fair of me at all.

happyandblue2 said...

Only lived in one place.
I can't believe that of all the places you could have lived one was called Erie and the other was called Waco, hee,hee,hee..

deni said...

When I was little, my parents divorced and my mom moved us here to PA from Michigan. Years later, we visited friends up there and we took a drive to see our old house.

It looked so different, and looked much smaller than I remembered.

Carol (Smiles and Laughter) said...

ROFL, H&B. Never thought of that! Although, in my defense, Waco is pronounced WAYCO. LOL.

Nyx said...

I think I've lived in 6 or 7 different places, had to do it as a kid (see Cesca's reply) and you do get used to it. I could easily up and move right now actually.

As to going back, I definitely always feel quite weird and the old place always seems so much smaller.

MilkMaid said...

I live not far from where I was born and raised actually. In fact, Big Kid went to my elementary school for a few years.

BUT...when I drive by the house, thru the neighborhood we were raised in, it does invoke all those memories, layers and layers. It's been a while since I've done this.

That big old house we used to be SO proud of because it was BRICK and it had FOUR bedrooms and was so big, is really pretty little and normal. LOL!

When my Mother died, MilkMan and I actually moved back into this house for a few years and lived. That was odd and took a lot of adjustment.

BTW Waco...home of that religious Wacko, what was his name? LOL, don't ya hate that he'll always be connected to your town when you mention it? MilkMan has some family there in Waco, they love it there.

Carol (Smiles and Laughter) said...

Milkmaid, you are thinking David Koresh! Ug, yea. I do hate that association. Just after it happened we were traveling by car up north and people would see our Texas license plate. They would ask where we were from, and we would say "waco". Then we would have to answer all the David Koresh questions, like did we know him?? (no), have we ever been to the compound (no), did we know about them before all this happened (no). Finally we would tell people we were from the little towns outside Waco that no one ever heard of!

MilkMaid said...

LOL Carol..yeah.. I was working in the office at that time and had a lot of phone contact with other's out of state. I think everybody I knew at home office called to ask about how far and all that. ;-)

I went to a garage sale with MIL a few years ago. About two streets from her house in Houston. AFTER we shopped and got back into the car, MIL says, that old lady is David Koresh's mother. Ack.....sure enough, it really was.

MilkMan's aunt (she's about a loon) made contact and good friends with those few left alive from up there after the fire. She's always wanting me to go to their reunions every year. Don't think so Tim. ;-)

geek.jedi said...

Yes, in fact I've an entry about it here...

http://www.technomage.org/2002/06/time-and-distance.html