This past week I had some business in my old neighborhood.
Linda and I were just a few short blocks away from the home I grew up in.
I didn't really want to spend much time in that neighborhood because it is really not safe at all.
We decided it was ok because it was morning,about 10 AM.
We drove down 103rd street where my grandfather worked at the Great Southern Laundry.This is now some kind of chuch and I was glad to see that.
I saw the park where I spent so much time playing baseball.
There is a 300 foot tower there now,in the middle of left field.
She drove us down 104th street where my old school once stood.It is gone now,it looks like a newer public school is being built.
It was strange seeing the place where I spent so much time there,now there is no more Roseland Christian School.
We took the bend around the old pumping station and came up to 104th place.
I was stunned to see so many house boarded up,it was just surreal.
We drove to my house at 304,and it too is boarded up.Abandoned.
Grass is overgrown,boards on all the windows and doors,gates falling down.
I felt kind of sad seeing this,looking up at my old bedroom window,my parents bedroom window,kitchen windows,every window now shows no more sunshine.
I always wanted to see the inside one more time.I don't think it will ever happen.
About half of the houses on my street have no windows now.Most have ugly plywood blocking entry and preventing more broken glass.
Glass was everywhere,on the sidewalks,on the streets and in the yards.
Some homes were just gone,leaving a plot of land filled with weeds.
The little green store on the corner looks like it has been abandoned for years.No more candy from there.No newspapers,no pop.
Do I miss those old days? Yes.Would I go back if I could? No.
Those days are gone and I remember them very well.
I was just thinking there would be no more memories from some other boy who could have lived there.
My bedroom now is an empty shell.The kitchen has no more moms to come home to.
The living room has no family now,just darkness.
The dining room where uncles and aunts once came is dark too.
The basement that was a place of wonder for me is dark.
The grass I hated cutting won't be cut anymore.
How small that yard looks now.
Looking down the sidewalk where Mr. Reilly taught me how to ride a bike when I was 5.The sidewalk is there.How well I remember that day.
Who said you can't go home again?
He was right.