I've reached a point in my life when the anchors of my childhood are vanishing. Frosty Cup, a restaurant and ice cream shop we frequented when I was a kid, burned to the ground last year. Nine months later, The Spot roller rink suffered the same fate. Both places represent powerful and defining moments in my youth. I am resigned to the fact that losses like this will continue to happen as the years pass.
Recently, my father, who had been divorced for over 20 years, met a lovely woman and remarried. This meant that either his new wife would move in with him, or he would move in with her. No point in having two houses after all. So naturally, the decision was made to move 20 miles away to start a new life in a new home.
The house he was leaving behind was his home for over 40 years. The place where I grew up, and the only home I ever knew before I left for college. But It was more than that, It was also my mother's childhood home. My grandmother, a single mother, raised three daughters in that same house. Over the course of 60 plus years, four generations of my family have called 120 Copier street home.
With my father's new-found happy life, it was time to begin a new chapter. It gave me comfort to know I was always welcome home. I didn't spend much time there during my adult life, but it was nice to know it was there. Whenever I chose, I could go back. But in the summer of 2017, that was about to change.
I felt compelled to visit one last time and document a place that nurtured my formative years. The place where I fell in love with photography, learned how to ride a bike, had my fist sip of beer, and lost my virginity. Without access to this old and time-worn friend, those memories would soon lose their touchstone.
It was vastly different from how I remembered it. My bedroom had long since been removed in favor of a larger kitchen. Much of the furniture in the living room was different. But still, most of what I remembered was still there. Hints of the past were everywhere. The experience was, in its own subtle way, profound.
Someone bought the house, making several updates and changes. Some of the layout was different. New paint, carpet, and the "octopus" as my sister and I called it, was gone. In its place, a high efficiency furnace. I scarcely recognize it as the place I once knew.
The photos are here to remind me.