Summertime is vacation season. A time when families often gather for reunions. A time for traveling to places where you established roots. How can revisiting places from your past change you?
The more you know about the past, the better prepared you are for the future. Theodore Roosevelt
Reconnect to forgotten Memories
Going back to a place where you have history can
- Reestablish a connection to forgotten memories
- Help you appreciate your own progress on your lifeway
- Appreciate influences that shaped your character
- Realize how choices good and bad shape your destiny
Several years ago, I returned to Florida and took a brief tour of the community where I grew up. The three bedroom home on Elbow Creek still remains, although it is much smaller than I remember. The pine tree and Hibiscus bush no longer claim spots along the front porch, where I learned to play hop scotch.
Those summer nights included choruses of crickets and burring tree frogs. But the grunting of the alligators made me shiver in my bed. Thank goodness for the fence, the barrier between our house and the creek.
I will never forget the day our dog Perky was attacked by an alligator. I had arrived home from school and found the poor hound yelping on the back porch, a ten inch gash in her hind leg. The Vet stitched her up almost as good as new. Not long afterward, some officials from the city shot a huge gator in the neighbor’s back yard and strung it up. A sight forever imprinted in my memory.
The mosquito spray truck used to sputter through the neighborhood, making a weekly appearance. We were ever so thankful to have some relief from the pests. The spray probably wasn’t healthy for humans. But the EPA wasn’t in existence then.
For fun during those hot summer days, our biggest treat was a trip to the beach some ten miles from our house. Mother would fix tuna sandwiches, slices of watermelon and cantaloupe. Our favorite drink was Kool-Aid. It was so refreshing after paddling about the shore of Canova Beach.
Growing up in Florida helped me appreciate the change of seasons elsewhere. Every Christmas that I remember was warm and sunny. I’m sure my memory has erased the days that were rainy and cold. I appreciate that I got a good educational foundation in Florida schools.
My faith journey began in the home on Elbow Creek. As I look back, I recall Sunday school teachers, a High School teacher and others who helped shape the person I am today. From them I learned to persevere, think for myself and appreciate history.
The Good and the Bad
Even the negative experiences such as broken friendships and family hardship developed my character. Those difficult times provided growth. Learning to cope through pain matured my faith.
When you return to places in your past, what memories do you recall? Are there events, people or settings that influenced who you are today?