“Whhhhhhy, back in MY day…”
Good morning all, it’s time for you to clamber into the Wayback Machine and participate in this week’s “The More Things Change” Edition of the Axis of Weevil Thursday Three!
Our inquiries this week were supplied by our favorite college professor and small-engine repairman, who claims he was inspired by my recent jaunt through the freshly-constructed suburbs south of town--suburbs that in my youth were full of free-roaming wooly mammoths and cave-dwellers. At least in the perception of my youngest child.
Anyway, as is the usual case, all of you are free to play along by either leaving your answers in the comments below or a link to your very own blog.
And away we go--
1. Do you still live in the town where you grew up? If not, what do you miss the most? If so, what has changed the most?
2. Does your family still own the house you grew up in? Either way, what was it like the last time you saw it?
3. What is the biggest change in the last 5 years where you live now?
Okay, now that Sherman has closed us in and set the dial, my answers look like this—
Hey! Mr. Peabody is a favorite of mine and, ironically Peabody is a family name and I’ll touch upon that in a moment.
1)No, I do not live in either of the towns I grew up in. I was born in a small town in Litchfield Connecticut. There we lived on a dirt road surrounded by cow fields. Then, sadly, my father passed away in the summer of ’76 and we moved to Norwich, Vt. I consider Norwich to be more of my home town simply because I have more memories of growing up in Vermont than of Connecticut.
What I miss the most of my home town is winter and my mother. Norwich really hasn’t changed much. The elementary school has been renovated and expanded, but the overall flavor remains same. Dan & Whits is remains the hub of town and you can still make local calls for free from the store’s phone. As for New Milford, it has changed, but not a whole lot. Several years ago I took Larry back there and I was shocked that I could still find my way around. It had been 20 years and I had never driven there (I was only 10 and half when we moved), but it all came back. The town looked pretty much the same except my elementary school was gone.
2) My family does not own any of the houses that I grew up in, but... two of the houses my mother grew up in are still in the family. One is called the Big House or Burnside and here is a picture of it with my family. The people are from left to right: Daphne, Aunt Liz, Babette, Peter, Eliza, My Mother, My brother, Me with Max, Larry with Rebecca and Jake and Nate in front of Larry and me. Aunt Liz is my mother’s sister-in-law and she is the mother of Peter. Peter and Babette live in the house now and have three children: Peter (not pictured), Daphne and Eliza. We used to go there every summer and play on the beach. The house itself has remained pretty much the same, only having some minor remodeling and modernization. Oh and some Peabodys have lived in this house.
As for the houses I grew up in, it is a mixed story. The house in Connecticut is very different. Housing developments had sprung up in some of the surrounding cow fields and most of the plantings around the house had been replaced. I was particularly saddened by the removal of the gigantic forsythia that had flanked the entrance to the driveway. They were so large that my brother and I could actually climb about inside them. They made excellent forts. The house looked nice, but it was not the same.
The Vermont house, it has changed a little bit, but it is still recognizable. The biggest change is the new driveway running by it to the back field. The people who bought the house from my mother divided the land and a house was built in the back field, but the overall character of the house remains the same.
3) I now live in one of the fastest growing counties in Virginia. A new subdivision has been put in on the road leading to my subdivision. A Food Lion along with a couple of strip malls has been built nearby. And, finally, an extension was added to the local highway that makes it possible to go to the far west side of Richmond in no time flat. As a result of all this growth the schools are bursting at the seams and the local school board is in denial.
So yes, there has been a lot of change in my life.