Redartz: Hello gang; hope you're up for a little introspection. I'll try to keep things light, never fear! This week's post was prompted by an experience I had over the past weekend. Being Mother's Day on Sunday, I went back North to my hometown to visit my Mom (having moved around some, she has ended up back where we started). The visit was great, had a good time visiting with her and with other family members. When the event ended, I had a little extra time available before I needed to hit the highway for home. So on a whim, I decided to take a little drive around the old haunts and see how things had changed.
As it turned out, much had. Sadly, my hometown fell victim to the worst effects of recession and loss of industry. I knew that going in, but it kind of struck me more intently; seeing so many familiar sights gone. There were a few businesses actually remaining that I recalled from, well, forty years ago. And there were some signs that there was still some life in the town, despite the omnipresent empty buildings and abandoned lots. But perhaps what hit me hardest was my stop at a local park; one I visited very frequently as a youth (indeed, among my very earliest memories is a trip to said park with my family and cousins, drinking Kool-Aid and swinging on the swingsets). Long story short, the park was being eliminated. All the swings and attractions were gone. Picnic tables gone. Even the trees were being cut down. It was.....disappointing.
But, as I said above, I don't want to get too down here. As they say, the only constant in life is change. Which brings us to our questions. After I left town and was on the three hour drive home, I had the radio (Sirius XM) going full bore. The music, all 70's and 80's, perked me up quickly, as did the knowledge that some of the changes I witnessed would work for the good. So, our questions:
1. How has your 'origin town' changed! Have you visited recently; or perhaps even still live there? Is there much remaining that would have been familiar to young you?
2. If you are needing a little 'blast from the past', how do you achieve it? We surely have many ways, in this day of internet availability. Additionally, where do you find elements of optimism, signs of improvement, as you look around you physically and culturally? If you were a teen today, what would you look back on fondly?
Again, hope this isn't too...navel-contemplative. Just kind of put me in a thoughtful state of mind this week. At any rate, here's a sneak preview hint for next week: a look at BWS...