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What I Love About Fremont: Going Home

There’s something lovely about driving home to Fremont.  I used to take the Turnpike, but lately I’ve been taking 303.  The yellow and green fields, the deer on the edge of the woods and the low-lying areas, and the smell of cow manure permeating the air–it’s a place I know.

303 is a smoother transition into Fremont.  The way the land just gets flatter and flatter, until I am flying down Route 20 through Monroeville, Bellevue, and Clyde.  Past the Whirlpool plant where I spent six summers and numerous breaks building the back panels of washing machines.  Where I made friends that I still talk to, that still keep an eye on me.  On Woodland Avenue, I veer off onto country roads, flying at 70 miles an hour, hugging the curves of the roads that I know like the curve of my waist into my hip.

Past the houses, past the people, past the cars I know.  And feeling the key in the lock and the screen pressed against my shoulder as I shift my bag from one arm to another.  My mother pulls me into her arms, my father yells, “Hoot!” from somewhere in the house, and my brother waves lazily from the couch.

—–

I’m going home tomorrow.  I cannot wait to run my 6-mile country block.  I cannot wait to go to the Depot or the Croghan Street Yacht Club and throw back a couple beers.  I cannot wait to lie by the pool.  I cannot wait to do my laundry.  I cannot wait to see my cousins at Heather’s baby shower.  I hope, too, that some of you will want to go to the Sacred Heart Festival, and that we’ll have a good ole time.  Get a hold of me if you’d like to go!  The Menus and the CoCoBeanOs are playing!

The Menus

The CoCoBeanOs

Mike will be in PA this weekend, so I’ll be flying solo.  Give a girl a friend?  Thanks!

Have an awesome day, ya’ll!

 

 
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Posted by on July 14, 2011 in Daily Happenings, Fremont

 

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A Country Run – On Going Home

No matter where I go, or what I do, Fremont is home.  I swore to myself that I’d get out of that town, but it’s obvious to anyone who knows me that Fremont is in my blood.

Because Mike had a golf tournament this weekend, we decided it would probably be a waste for me to go to Pennsylvania, and that he’d probably be too sunburnt/hungover/tired to really hang out much this weekend.  So he golfed, and I took that long drive down route 303 toward my parents’ house.

I knew the moment I pulled off of the highway onto Smith Road that it was going to be one of those weekends that I felt homesick, even in my own home.  I spent Friday night watching the Cleveland Indians in my living room with my family, just like I used to.  And with a little wine in my system, I fell asleep on the couch with the TV glowing, rejoicing in everything that is cable television.

On Saturday morning, I went for a run on my country block–the block that used to put me in my place, and open up my eyes (and this time tore up my feet due to lack of summer feet – see picture to the left).  And I stopped and talked to a little old couple who always wave at me from their porch.  I took time to look out over the Sandusky River at all the people fishing off of the State Street Bridge.  I knew people who were driving past me in cars.  I didn’t realize how much I’d missed that.  I went for the same run on Sunday, stopping to talk to my old softball coach and wandering around the small streets behind the Ballville EZ Shop.

It’s insane how memories can exist in a place.  Remembering a ride down a certain road in a dune buggy, looking at the stars near Tindall Bridge with my first real boyfriend, almost crashing my car into the Sandusky River when my brakes locked up.  Watching my cousin, Clay get ready for prom got me completely lost in memories of my own prom.

I always told myself that I would never live in Fremont again, that there was no opportunity for me there.  But I found myself wishing that someday there would be.  But I guess that’s the bittersweet part about moving away from home.  People laughed at my love for my hometown in college.  So I can’t say that I didn’t appreciate it until I was gone.  I did appreciate it, but I shamed myself out of it.  And I’m lucky that I can still go back and see everything that is familiar to me and comforted me as a child.  Fremont isn’t so bad.  It may not hold any opportunity for me right now, but it’s still where I came from.

What it comes down to is that tearing up your feet on your home turf, and seeing the familiar faces reminds you that you’re stronger than you were, and that where you came from did play a part who you are today.

 
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Posted by on May 23, 2011 in Daily Happenings

 

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New Home

Red maple leaves drift like cardinals to the concrete.  The wind swirls into visibility.  Beams of sunlight angle into the windows as though from a cracked kaleidoscope.

It is Autumn in Ohio, and I am standing on the crackling leaves of my first September without school.  So many things have happened.  So many emotions.

Let’s start at the beginning.  I got a job, a wonderful job, with Foundation Software.  I’m the new Marketing Writer and I love everything that is happening with it.  I started today, and while it was a lot of information all at once, it was incredible.  There is so much to learn and so many opportunities.  And the truth is that I am thrilled to have a job that allows me to write for a living.

Brunswick, Ohio is where I live now.  I love Ohio, and it feels good to be back.  I’ve always felt at home here, and I thought that was something that would never change.  But the truth is that it has a little bit.  My home is no longer a place.  It’s a state of mind, a state of place, a state of company.  The only thing that makes me feel like I am where I belong is being next to Mike.  I miss Franklin because I miss Mike.  And it’s absolutely no fun lying down at night alone.  But there are the weekends.  We’ll always have the weekends.  He says he won’t read my blog, but if he does, I hope he knows that I am completely devoted to him.

So I rented a one bedroom apartment, filled it with all of my things, and even though I write from a papasan cushion on the floor, I feel like I might be okay.  It’s certainly scary.  There is no one there to kill spiders, and nowhere for my bird feeder.  I don’t know anyone in town.  There is no Mike to curl up on.  But this all feels good.  The job feels good.  I feel confident.  I don’t feel like I wasted seven years of my life in school, and I am slowly, but surely, understanding what it is to be an adult.

Stuff is expensive.  Bills suck.  But you know what?  It’s rewarding.

Pictures when I get settled.

 
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Posted by on September 29, 2010 in Domesticity

 

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Ashland, I think.

I went to Ashland yesterday morning to visit with some friends I went to college with.  Sounds like a fun time, right?

I got there early, stopped at the Goasis just to stop there, and I was thrilled, excited, home, when in the process of walking in and out, four men opened the door and stepped out of the way.  One man even was halfway through the door, and stepped back out again.  And crawling all over Goasis, farmers, men in Wranglers with torn sleeves and long, lean farm muscles.  There were more pick-up trucks than Mercedes, and right away, I saw a Yoder Furniture truck.  There were three Amish horses and buggies just off I-71, the smell of manure and cut grass in the air, and excitement all around us.  The freshmen were there for their first weekend.

There are so many places I used to go in Ashland, and as I drove down Main Street where the bars were too far to walk.  Center Street, where all the houses are beautiful, hidden by bushes, set far back from the road.  I looked for the poor homeless man who used to live in a gazebo by the movie theater, and for my old coffee house, which had been turned into a party supply store.

I went to see friends, though.  One moved to Indianapolis after college, one to Canton, Ohio, and one remained in Ashland.  I, of course, have been bouncing between North Carolina and Franklin, Pennsylvania.  So we met up, drank some beers on the Ashland friend’s porch, hung out with her husband and her tenant.  And it was peaceful, but it felt so adult.

We ate dinner at Buffalo Wild Wings, the closest bar to campus, the one we stumbled home from on countless star-filled nights with our ears ringing from karaoke and our throats sore from cigarettes.  And then we wandered campus.

Our dorm was called Myers, and it used to be all girls.  Now two floors are boys, and everything is different.  The picnic table where I smoked cigarettes with a long-haired boy in college is now a babbling brook.  The diamond-plated stairs that I used to slide down in the snow are now concrete and safe.  The umbrella trees where we used to hide are now open mulch.  But my tree on the Quad is there.  It’s still strong and standing.

But it’s not the same.  I cannot expect it to stay the same, although it wouldn’t hurt if it did.  I learned so much about who I was at Ashland because of the places I went, frequented, lived.  I’m not sure that matters as much now, though, as I am a completely different person.  I know this only because my friends and I were not connecting…or maybe we were, the way we used to.  But I felt like a cool Autumn breeze, blowing through the Summer of my life, where my friends still live.  Am I jaded to already be the one in the Autumn of my life?

Ashland at Night

In front of the fountain. Me, Rachel, Kay, Barbs.

Me, in a tree I used to climb.

Rachel came, too.

In front of our old dorm.

Old roomies.

Just a few pictures from the weekend.

And now, some of Mike and me, for good measure.

Adoration.

Before the wedding.

If I'm lucky, he'll keep me.

 
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Posted by on August 29, 2010 in Daily Happenings

 

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