OK, photography and history buffs, get on the mark! You’re being challenged by Scott Thomas over at Views Infinitum with Assignment 13: Hometown History. (Click on the link to see what it’s all about. Hint: assignment due next Wednesday, May 25th at the witching hour of midnight. If we all live past the rapture, that is. Oops, sorry. Didn’t mean to veer off into end-of-world predictions. I’m betting that we’ll be here for Scott’s deadline, although I could be wrong. Good reason to get your assignment done early, though!)
First, we must clear up any misunderstanding about the word “hometown”. Hometown means many things to many folks. Some people think hometown means the place where you were born and raised, hit your chin on a cement block at age five and needed stitches at the hospital, where you kissed your first boyfriend or girlfriend, or where you wore that long light blue gown and walked two-by-two into the steamy high school gym with Joe Ryan to get your diploma.
Yes, yes. That’s a feasible hometown. But hometown can mean more than ancient history. Hometown can also mean where you’re living now. Where your feet are walking. Where you get your mail. Where you go to the doctor. Where you buy your groceries.
Hometown can mean where your feet live, or where your heart lives. It can be a rather permanent hometown, or a stepping stone on to more promising outposts. I do have a very strong belief, though, that if we’re living in or near a town–even if we don’t like it–we’re living there for a reason. Part of our reason might be that we need to open our eyes and let our hearts discover what we like about our current hometown. When we’ve opened our hearts to love what we once disliked, the town will release us to new abodes. Or else we may end up staying forever and ever, amen.
(Which is what happened to me. I prayed to God to get me out of this “godforsaken” place during a vacation to the U.P. at age 12. “Just get me out of the Upper Peninsula,” I prayed, “that’s all I ask.” Guess what God did? Chucked! Signed me up for the long haul. And guess what folks? Learned to love this place, by golly.)
Stepping off soap box now. Sorry for this little detour.
Then there’s the word “history”. I don’t think Scott specified if “recent” history qualified. I decided it did. Recent history, in this case, dives back to the late 1950’s and early 1960’s in Yale, Michigan. I would say that’s history, wouldn’t you?
Since this assignment was brought to my wandering attention by Isa over in Switzerland (click here to read her contribution) and since I was actually in my first hometown–no, make that my third hometown, coming in directly after Cass City and Sandusky, MI–last week, here is my contribution for the assignment.
See the above pharmacy up above? I started working at this very store at twelve years old. Earned fifty cents an hour. Candy bars cost ten cents (or was that five cents?) My favorite day was Christmas Eve. We all worked our tails off at the store–except for Mom preparing for the holidays at home–and trooped back to the house just before dinner to begin our family celebration.
Ahhh…nostalgic family history. I am even getting teared up. (Excuse me. My mother taught me never to end a sentence with a preposition. She might even have advised against excessive paragraphs, ellipses and exclamation marks as well.)
OK, after today’s post, I only have one more set of photos from Yale to show you. They do not qualify as history. They are pictures of my brother Scot’s family horses.
Hope some of you decide to play along and share your own hometown history–wherever you decide that place might be. (I am wondering if someone who lives in the woods, twelve miles from town, might even consider the woods to be their hometown. What do you think?)