Knotty Purls

"Bears, Beets, Battlestar Galactica"

Saturday, May 19, 2007

Memory Lane

In the past few weeks I have spent a lot of time thinking about my childhood; the good, the bad, the ugly and the down right insane. I was reading Joan’s blog and her topic took me down memory lane. Do you know what a Fiddlehead is? My mom and my grandfather loved fiddleheads. They would head to the river together to pick them and then we would have them at dinner. Well, everyone but me would eat them for dinner. They always had them the same way – butter and vinegar. The article Joan’s blog entry refers to talks about many recipes for fiddleheads but we were havin none of that fancy eatin in our house! Even better, my Grammy eats dandelions.

It is amazing the things we remember from our childhood that makes us wonder what our parents were thinking. Piglet and I were cruising through the children’s section at Barnes & Noble and I saw books that I loved as a child and it brought back memories. My parents were really strict about a lot of things. I had read most of Judy Blume’s books when my mother found out that several didn’t meet the standards of her friends and from then on they were banned. Of course she didn’t bother to read the books before banning them. I didn’t read a lot of the classics (except the Laura Ingalls Wilder books) because they were the books of the heathens. So, I read the Ramona series by Beverly Cleary. I owned them all and read them many times over. Children today have so many more opportunities than I had. We didn’t have Borders, Barnes & Noble or Amazon. We had one bookstore in town and I don’t think it had “story time”. We had one public library but we didn’t use it because libraries were for hippies (I grew up in the 70’s) and poor people. We were neither. My elementary school had a library – it had most of the Encyclopedia Britannica.

I grew up in a small town and my parents grew up in an even smaller town. I am grateful that I got the hell out of dodge! But, it has made me more aware of what we do for and to Piglet and it has made me more understanding of the ignorance that comes from living in an isolated state.

Thinking about growing up started me on another search. I have a high school reunion this summer. I won’t say what number but it is definitely into double digits. It led me to find old classmates on Classmates and Myspace (ack! I felt dirty just going there. If the police are reading this, I am not looking for a prom date!). I never did find anything on my reunion but I don’t know if I would go anyway. Many years, states, jobs and friends later I still feel intimidated by the popular kids. I was not one of them. What would we talk about? “Remember when we…” I didn’t have that with most of my classmates. Most of my friends were at church. I knew a lot of my classmates my whole life but didn’t go to school with them until high school. It was weird being the old and new kid all at the same time. It was a small world. Kids didn’t just move in and out of our town. By high school they had been in school together for nine years. Truth is, I don't really care what any of them are up to. I hope Piglet gets to be in an environment that holds old friends but opens to new ones without question.

We are going home in a few weeks. Home to a world that rarely changes. Home to a place where people are fascinated that we don’t live there (and our town has more than one stop light). Home to a place where I lived most of my life but I don’t look or sound like people who have lived there most of their life. Home to a parent who remembers events totally different than I even though we were both there. Home to a house I didn’t grow up in. Home to a place that isn’t really home.

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