Saturday, December 12, 2009

I'll Always Call It Home

This is where I grew up. All of my formative years were spent here. Right smack dab here.

My childhood was spent swinging and playing here. Teenage years, well, you know what teenagers do. I don't need to go into any details there.

I can't tell you how many social gatherings took place here. Every Friday and Saturday night, the parking lot was full of cars--hippies everywhere!

Into my twenties, we played baseball every Sunday.

I can't tell you how many times I've walked these paths, as a young child with mom holding my hand, or even running away from home when I was about four! Ha. My father had his photo lab in our basement in the early 60s. I told my mom I was going down to "help" him. I snuck out the basement door (I guess dad was in the darkroom) and I walked up to the park. No one even missed me! A couple of gentlemen knocked on the door, with me by their side, telling mom they found me at the park! "You should keep a closer watch on this little girl," they scolded her. How embarrassing! Two MEN! I've always had a good guardian angel looking over me.

Once mom told me that we were walking up the path and I had something in my shoe. She stopped and took my little red sneaker off, shook out what was bothering me and put it back on my foot and we continued on our merry little way up the path. When I asked what was in there, she told me it was a pebble. Later she told me the truth. It was a roach! OMG! I was terrified of bugs, so she knew better than to tell me the truth. Ew.

I remember having field trips here when we were in kindergarten at Oakdridge. We'd walk over to the park and have lunch. I had forgot to bring a bagged lunch (my mom always worked in the school cafeterias where I was). Mom somehow got home, made me a scrambled egg sandwich and brought it back up to the park. It was the best sandwich ever. I still remember it vividly. Cherished memories.

We had a kegger toga party in this area in the back behind the tennis courts. The police came, kegs were rolled down the hill and bodies scattered in all directions. There was an array of evidence left over though. My aunt and uncle owned a sightseeing business. They had these little metal buttons they would give out on the tours. My brothers had the brilliant idea of giving you a button once you paid your "keg fee." There were sightseeing buttons EVERYWHERE! ha I wonder if my uncle ever got a call from the Arlington Co. Police Dept. Lordy me. I would have loved to have found one. I did a little digging, but no such luck.

I walked around the park for over an hour. Reminiscing. What memories.

And then I rolled down the street to check up on the nice people who had bought mom's house. I was totally shocked to see it had already been sold once and now was in foreclosure. How sad. What memories were made here. All of mom's flowers were dug up, so I'm hoping the lady took them all when they sold it. How sad. For everything, there is a season. Sniffle. I have to let go now.

I then made my way over to Pentagon City, the shopping mall down the street. I had lunch at Nordstrom's after walking my little feet off. Soup and salad. I had never eaten at Nordy's before. It was good.

Before I knew it, it was time for Mary Jane to get off work. I grabbed dinner at The Chicken Place in Bailey's Crossroads, close to MJ's. It's a Peruvian joint and has the best mixed grill (rotisserie chicken, steak, sausage, pork chop) you'll find anywhere. Mom and I would frequent it at least once when I came back home. Yum. I know MJ was tired as her new baby grandson was just born earlier in the day. They thought he had an infection. So it was a bit trying.

As the night wore on, the baby was diagnosed with a heart defect. I was happy to be there with her so she didn't' have to be alone. We called Dr. Aim (who is married to an ER doctor) and asked her questions and she was a big help. (Baby Cooper is now home from the hospital and thriving! Yay!!) Here is my Sunny Buns, MJ's kitty.

And my room for the next couple of nights after I blew it up! It's always so wonderful staying at Mary Jane's. So laid back and comfy. Thanks so much Mary Jane!



Janet said...

That must have been fun taking a trip down memory lane. Great pictures of the park and the path. You're a lucky gal! In this day and age if two men found a little girl who knows what could have happened!!

I'm glad the new baby is home and doing good.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Great pictures! I love those woods...

Good to know your baby is doing well ans is back home!



Snap said...

Great trip down memory lane! Toga keg party -- goodness, girlfriend! :D :D :D Baby Cooper will do just fine -- I KNOW it! Aren't friends wonderful?


Thrifty Miss Priss said...

I was reading your blog outloud to my husband as we drove from mall to mall last night...a lot of these places he knows about.....that chicken place is something we've always wanted to was written up in the Post a few years ago. The TOGA party story is hilarious and quite clever of your brothers to make everyone wear a button....uh...until the police showed up!
But when I got to the part about your moms home....we both just said "Awww!" at the same time. So sad to see this.....I can see how it upset you. I guess these are the times we live in....but someone will move in to that house and raise their kids and be just as happy as your mom must have been.
Loved hearing all your stories!
PS what High School did you go to?

Queenly Things said...

Since I still live in the place I grew up, I forget, sometimes, about the special places. Now there are just layers upon layers and even still, I discover new places nearby.

Mrs. Staggs said...

I had Ledo's pizza when I visited my friend Beth. It was good!

I'm glad that you enjoyed a nice visit with your friend, and that the new baby is going to be ok. What a worry that must have been.

You are doing a bit of what I always do, when someone close to me passes on. There is this thing that happens, where time sort of stops, and then, it moves backward, and you relive your life all over again. Where you've been, where you're going, and most importantly, where you are right now, in the moment....the only thing I've really figured out, is that somehow, it all comes back to the love that we give and are given. I know that when it's my turn to go though, I'm going to have lots of questions to ask when I get to where ever it is we're going! LOL! Hmmmm....They might send me right back!

Take good care of those memories. They are life's treasure.


GreenishLady said...

Dear Rosemary, I fell out of Blogland... it just happened, and so I missed word of your Mom's passing. I am so sorry. I love your way of sharing the celebration of her life, and her presence in all you are doing is palpable. I send you my sympathies, and my heartfelt wishes and prayers for peace in your heart.

Anonymous said...

Were any of the picnic tables there? What great times! Love ya gf! ~ A



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