Places I’ve lived
My early life was a whirlwind of change, constant moving. I have memory issues to start with, so this exercise will be interesting.
Vague memories are the only place I start. First there is the restaurant that my father owned. I remember very little about it, and I am not sure which memories are real. I remember a pull out couch where we slept four or five kids. It was dark, dusty and paradoxically smelled of mold. It was a sad place, full of anger and confusion.
I have some photos which show me and my brothers at various places for Christmas, and they were mostly at my Grandparent's home. Bright sunlight, matching shirts and squinting for the photos. But those are memories of the photos. Memories of memories perhaps.
The next snapshot is a brief one. Nighttime, driving back to my mother's apartment, my dad telling me that we will be fine and that he is going to buy her a car of her own. I don't think he ever did. I don't even remember the inside of that place, but I know I was at least 10 because that is when they split up.
Then there is Cummings Ave. I remember a corner lot, hot sun baking the bricks and the dry grass cracking under my steps. My step-father lived with us here. I think this is the last place I remember seeing my dad.
Then the memories come more clearly into focus. We moved to Kemptville. I must have been 11 or 12. It was a good home, with a pool we dug ourselves and a basement with a gameroom/teen den. It is where I grew up, where I found myself again, where I made myself into something new. This was the chrysalis for me, walking to school and making friends of the neighbours, friends I still keep in touch with to this day.
This is where I brought my fiancé home to meet my family. More about Kemptville tomorrow.