Drive by....move on.

On Facebook the other day, I looked at the photo of the house and thought it was one of the houses I grew up in!  And it was.  But it wasn't.  If we played the Match Game, it would be a perfect fit.

Instead it was its twin or quadruple or maybe one hundred forty-ish of the same floor plan.  My folks always bought tract homes.

Joe, a classmate in school, posted that he got to talking to a man seated next to him on an airplane.  Turns out that guy bought Joe's family's house, and they invited him over anytime to check it out.  And then a lot of people commented that they lived in Eastbluff, too!

I made a suggestion on FaceBook that those of us who lived in the Eastbluff development of Newport Beach, back in the mid 60's, should have a reunion.

Then I got thinking.  What if we did have a reunion?  Kind of spontaneously showed up as a group at each of our old houses, without telling the current owners?  If they were home, would they see us standing there...either puking at how awful it was or aahhing at how gorgeous it now is?  Would that bring folks together?  Would it bridge the gap between the newbie owners and the oldies who once lived there?  Would anybody care?  Naw...I don't think so.

In the '60's, my dad and mom would drive us up to Santa Monica where his mom lived, and his sister with her husband.  We'd motor around in the station wagon, and he tell us about how things were and he would look for his old house, on a main drag.

Trouble was that it wasn't there.  His old house had become a movie theatre.  Not that his house was so big.  It wasn't.  But several lots had been purchased and voila!  A theatre was greeting people, instead of little Dickens, the boy who used to live there, with his solo mom and three brothers and one sister.

Flash to the late 1980's.  We'd bought this old beast, built in 1898.  I heard a knock on the door.  It was the "old" owner standing there!  Now I'd represented us in this transaction because that's what I did...I sold real estate.  And I didn't like this guy too much.

He practically walked himself in but I was too quick and blocked the door.  Get rid of him, I screamed inside.  I gave a small cursory smile.  "I see you've change the color!" "Yes, we have.  We used a colorist to do that."  "Oh, we did too."  Really?  All sunshine yellow with green trim?  I don't think so.  Get rid of him! "May I come in?"  "No, I'm very busy."  "I see you've changed the back yard." went back there?  "We did change it. And lots more. Buh-bye."  He wasn't getting anywhere with me.  After a lame excuse,  I closed the door while he was still standing on the porch. 

'They' talk about going back.  Going back to where you grew up.  Going back to your school site. Going back to where you thought you were but you can't find it or can't remember it exactly.  Going back to find memories.  But they aren't, not there.  They never have been there.  The memories are in our heads!  And time rolls on...never backwards.

We've seen so much.  Know so much.  Perspective.  You can't explain that to someone who wants to go 'back'.  It won't be the same.  It can't!

I guess I won't be hosting the reunion at the old houses in Eastbluff.  Somebody else can do that.  I think the owners would call the police and break us up.   

For me, I'm grateful that my life has not been spent in a tract house or a tract life.  In fact not one of us has lived like The Stepford Wives (or husbands or partners or solo).  They may be beautiful people.  But we've got the stories that keep those memories alive without the material effects.

So move on, like I tried to tell the previous house owner.  Just move on.

Thanks, Joe, for the inspiration, and the memories!

Live richly,  marilyn


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