Thursday, October 25, 2012

In My Little Town….

I grew up in a small town with a big heart.  I believe we led an idyllic life. We played kickball in front of our house, and hide and seek until dark.  We crafted may baskets for the elderly.  My dad taught every kid in the neighborhood to water ski. We skied and swam all summer long, and ice skated on the pond in winter.  The whole town came to the football  basketball, and baseball games. There was an older lady in our neighborhood named Opal, she played cards with us on rainy days.  It didn’t matter what time of day it was…if we knocked we were welcomed in for a game of 31.  And there was Clara. .. Clara was an amazing cook and gardener.  She always greeted us at her door with cake, cookies, or the bounty from her huge garden.  She was also the neighborhood watch dog.  When my older sister or her friend Cheryl would return from a date Clara  instinctively turned on her porch light and began sweeping .  I am not sure if she colluded with our parents or if she was just “inquisitive”.

The other night while waiting for my husband to arrive for dinner I visited Facebook and stopped in my tracks.  A friend from high school had posted these beautiful pictures.  All pictures but the first are the view I remember from my dad’s boathouse.  His home was torn down and replaced by two McMansions a few years back when he sold his house and moved to Texas. His side of the lake has changed a lot,  but across the lake it still remains as I remember it…
 
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“I grew up in a small town,  in a place where your whole world revolved around friends, family, school,  church, and sports”.
Kenny Chesney


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It was very much like Norman Rockwell: small town America. We walked to school or rode our bikes, …, skated on the pond.
Dorothy Hamill


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A small town is a place where there's no place to go where you shouldn't.” Burt Bacharach


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“To read the papers and to listen to the news... one would think the country is in terrible trouble. You do not get that impression when you travel the back roads and the small towns.  They do care about their country and wish it well.”  Charles Kuralt


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“In my little town…I grew up believing…God keeps his eye on us all…Simon and Garfunkel

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all images courtesy of dave bramlage 

I grew up in a little town called Monticello in Indiana.  I moved to California shortly after college and have lived here ever since.  I love California and hope to never  leave but there is something magical about growing up in a small town in the Midwest. The people are kinder and more grounded. Everyone looks out for everyone else. Maybe I wouldn’t feel the same had I stayed. 

When my children were young I tried to take them back every year to experience small town life in the Midwest. They loved it and I think they are better people for having experienced it. I try to go back for my high school reunions because I enjoy reconnecting with those people that helped and supported me while growing up.

In my little town…the leaves are beginning to turn…

Thanks Dave for the beautiful photos.

Did you grow up in a small town…if not do you wish you had?  Do you read Tongue In Cheek?   If not gohere….http://willows95988.typepad.com/tongue_cheek/  Corey now lives in France but grew up in a very small town in California…if you don’t read her blog you should it is wonderful. 

13 comments:

  1. This is so touching...I too am from a small town...

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  2. Great shots Dave. Ruth ad I love small town and love living on Lake Freeman. We never left here. Our view is looking out at the great colors on Ski Island. Very beautiful in early morning when there is a fog on the water. Great scene as I leave for work. The colors are beautiful. I need to take more time and take some shots. Those are great...

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  3. I grew up in the same small town. I raised my sons in a small town in Indiana. I love the country we live in and no where is the spirit of America more visible than among folks who care about each other!

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  4. Beautiful post and images. Sounds like you lived in a wonderful town. Thanks for sharing.

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  5. I grew up on a farm outside a small town and the sense of community we had there was wonderful and something you would never find in a city. I regret that my kids haven't had the same experience. x Sharon

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  6. Cindy, you summed up life in "our" small town very well. I'm not sure as kids we realized how nice it was. I couldn't wait to leave after high school, but you couldn't pull me away now!!

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  7. Cindy, What a wonderful town! The photos are just stunning.
    xo, Lissy

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  8. Beautiful words....beautiful photos! Loved growing up here, and I loved raising my children in the same small town. Now my husband and I live in the big city, but our small town will always be "HOME!"

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  9. Thanks for taking us back to the simpler times. Remembering them is good for the soul!

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  10. Thanks for the remembrance of simpler times. It is good for the soul!

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  11. Beautiful Pictures and Beautiful Words. Thanks for the photos Dave and thanks for being inspired to create the tribute Cindy! Monticello was such a nice place to grow up in!

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  12. well,
    i did sort of grow up in a smallish town.
    miami beach in the late 1960's and early 70's.
    then it was to manhattan at 18yrs old.
    my family owned summer homes in small towns and i did love them.
    that is probably why i just moved to maine.
    it is small town after small town.
    and you can't beat the beauty.
    :)

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  13. Cindy, LOVED the blog today and it brought tears to my eyes. I enjoyed seeing the photos...I remember living there on the lake and just sitting there mesmerized by the Fall colors. I have such GREAT memories of our neighborhood....... aren't we lucky! Clara also used a "75-year-old" spoon from her mother to stir up her batter for those delicious German Chocolate Cakes. The neighborhood Summer Olympic Games, our very own ski shows, making our own "houses" in the wood and spending hours on our bikes....all great memories. I bet lots of the people in the neighborhood still remember the May Day baskets we used to leave at their doors....ring the doorbell...then hide...until we said, " Happy May Day!" I forwarded this blog to my children....who were also lucky enough to grow up in that same small town....and, now I have 3 grandchildren that have that honor. What a sense of "belonging" we had....a true community! What a great catalyst for nostalgia!

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