Saturday, July 24, 2010

The horse you rode in on

When I was growing up in NewSuburbia Illinois I hated it. Or shall I say I hated the idea of it. A subdivision in between two cornfields, no major shopping, at the beginning not even mail delivery. Driving to the neighboring city to the train station, driving miles to the nearest department store, no city vibe, not the experience my heart the time...... I always yearned for more while playing kick the can, ghosts in the graveyard on endless summer nights and cool fall evenings trying to cheat a little bit of time before the snow covered the ground. Riding bikes on makeshift ramps at construction sites of the new jr high, church and pool....walking to the liquor store with a note from my parents and actually being sold liquor...opening the door of the local ginjoint only to hear yourself be greeted by your parents friends (and promptly walking your underage self out of the place). Suffering hour after hour of plebeian thoughts, midwestern mindsets, puritanical values and big hair........

I fled to the west, disdained my upbringing and started on a new discover.....what a lovely journey it actually had been to get there. How amazing it was to have the freedom to ride those bikes through construction sites, be known enough so the the liquor store owner would sell you the hootch and knowing if it really wasn't for your folks you would be found out, how crazy it was to be 10 years old and running through the dark neighborhood at 10 at night with your gang, no cell phone, no beeper, no worries....How the plebeian thoughts and midwestern mindsets combined with puritanical values made you safe, cherished, loved...created an atmosphere in which you had a whole town that was your safety net, your cheerleader, your biggest fan....(The big hair, not so much). How wonderful to meet with the people from your lucky to be given the opportunity to hold one hand out to your future and firmly grasp with the other hand your past...a past full of love, comfort and support.

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