Small Town, Big Memories

This weekend I went home. It is a funny thing, to call a place I have not lived in 11 years "home", but Albany will always be just that. It is even stranger when I think about the fact that I only lived in Albany for 7 years. It always feels like I was raised there. I don't know if that is because I spent my summers there before we moved, or if it is because the 7 years I lived there (on a day to day basis) were my teenage ones. (Technically I lived in Archer City longer, but I would never say that was home.)

On Saturday I left the house early and alone. I had a few places I wanted to visit by myself. The first place on my list was my Pepaw. I have to say, maybe I am biased, but his plot in the cemetery is really lovely. It may be the best spot in the whole place. It is at the top of a hill, has a tree for shade, and is perfectly angled to watch the sun rise.




After that, I went by my old house. (Yes, I stopped and took a picture, but it is okay...I know the people that live there now.)
My house was small, ugly, and perfect. It only had two bedrooms when we moved in, so we had to add a wall to create a room for mom. It still has only one bathroom, which was a pain! The bathroom had a marbled floor that was yellow and green. It also had a pocket door that separated the counter and sink from the toilet and shower area. The wall paper in both rooms was black and white trees, which when the lights were off and the gas stove lit, gave it a very creepy vibe! My bedroom had purplish-navyish carpet and one wall of blue velvet wall paper. Brother's room was red, blood red. Every other room had green carpet. It was truly hideous, but I can not imagine growing up anywhere else. (I feel the same way about my Memaw's house. It has a pink room and a blue room.) You can't see the car port or the giant shed that is on the other side. It also has a curved drive, I can remember crashing into the basketball goal at least once (maybe twice....).






After my house I headed back downtown, and to the most iconic of Albany images, the courthouse.

This was taken later that night, after dinner.























I was married on the courthouse lawn in the gazebo.

Because it was homecoming, I also took a quick trip up high school hill.
I remember painting the streets my senior year.




It is crazy how a trip home can stir up memories that have been dormant for years. I thought about Senior Club and the haunted house we put on to raise money, One Act Play my junior year (we did The Diviners), learning how to ski out on the lake, and roller-blading around the courthouse and down high school hill. I thought about my teachers, my classmates, and the 100's of other people who showed up to support us as we grew. I remembered selling donuts at the stop light at 5:00 in the morning, and people actually stopping and buying them from us. I thought about Fandangle, and the chill I still feel the last two weekends in June knowing that Prairie Land is being sung. 


I harbor the dream that someday, somehow, I will get to go back home for good. Until that day, I have my memories to sustain me.

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