Each day I see another Midwestern icon that brings back memories of my childhood.
This morning on my way to mom’s room, I saw a perfectly preserved, 1970s convertible with the top down – mom and dad in the front, two boys in the back. I swear they wore vintage garb. When the stoplight changed I came back to modern times and continued driving towards the rehab center. Two more vintage convertibles passed, heading the same direction as the first. I did wonder if I might be hallucinating. I was driving through an intersection that still has the drive-in burger joint and some old buildings, and I am always nostalgic when I pass by. No, I told myself, those cars and people are real.
Last night, as I left the rehab center, I saw soft light streaks to the west, but the sky was nearly dark. I was exhausted and drove slowly towards the main road. Over the green lawns, I saw fireflies blinking. I have written before about catching fireflies and keeping them in bottles so we could inspect their light show up close. After a long day, their illuminated greeting brought me quiet joy, deep sustenance, and sweet memories.
The day before yesterday I saw a blimp quietly floating in the sky. The Akron area (former Tire Capital of the World) has always been the home of the famous Goodyear Blimp, so I grew up seeing them occasionally floating by. Since, I see them only on TV, during football games. At first, I was astonished to see the blimp, but then I pulled over and just enjoyed the memory.
I have such an overwhelming sense that I am here for many reasons, including the good fortune to see my childhood through older, wiser, and kinder eyes.