A few days ago I was looking at one of my high school year books online at Classmates.com. I’ve attended two high schools, and countless other schools and the crazy part for me is that I am not in any pictures. I’m not in any of the class photos, nor are there any snapshots of me like many other people. You know those goofy pictures when they catch you sitting at your desk and you look up and all of a sudden…SNAP, and the next thing you know you’re in the High School yearbook for all eternity. It’s actually sad for me. Over the years my past is being erased bit by bit. Sometimes I sit back and think…man, where did I come from, who am I, what was I like back in the day.
It goes even deeper because I also feel as if my childhood was robbed from me. As a kid there was laughter and fun of course, but there is a huge empty void from my childhood that still plagues me today. Ya know, a couple of years ago I went back to Monroe, Louisiana to visit. Most of the old neighborhood where I once lived is now gone. It is has been redeveloped. Most of those old raggedy houses are now gone and there is a huge highway overpass towering over the neighborhood where I once lived. The old house I lived in is gone…the old dirt road I used to walk to school on is gone. Even the railroad tracks I used to walk along are non-existent. It looks nothing like I remember…and it’s sad. I sometimes use Google earth to take a look at some of the places I’ve lived and this one is heartbreaking for me. I remember across from my aunt’s house where I lived was the city dump. Well, across the street was an open field and on the other side of that field was the railroad tracks…and on the other side of the tracks was the dump. I remember I used to go over there and it was like a huge scavenger hunt. Yeah, I know most of you may be thinking…the trash dump! Yep, and it was like going to the mall. As a kid, it was exciting and you wouldn’t believe all the stuff I found over there. Now I must have been in the 3rd grade during this time. There were so many toys, old bikes, money, and stuff over there. And to a kid it was an adventure. Those are some of the memories I have as a kid….going to the dump to play and scavenger hunt. Some of you may ask, how and why did your aunt let you go over there? Wasn’t it dangerous for a kid to cross, and play, on those railroad tracks. Well, I was a latchkey kid. I’m sure many of you know what a latchkey kid is, right. If not, I’ll post about that next.