have you been to where your parents were born? What was it like?
I lived just outside the city where my father was born, in Utica, NY. I knew the house he lived in as a child but not the house he was born in. The house he lived in as a child was built by his father, a carpenter. It was a lovely house, with a parlor, dining room, kitchen, and den on the ground floor and three bedrooms and a large bathroom on the next floor. It has a lovely garden in the back of the house where my grandmother grew roses and annuals and succulents. There was also a small vegetable garden and a grape arbor. In the front yard were shrubs and some other flowering bushes. It was much smaller than the back garden. On the front of the house was a front porch that ran along the entire front of the house. It was very pleasant in the summer. The house was situated on a street just off one of the main streets of the city, near a park.
I visited the small town where my mother was born, Forest, VA. I saw the house where she was born and where she lived until she graduated from high school. It was a large, two storied white house with a large yard and an enclosed porch. The house was necessarily large for her large family of 9 brothers and sisters and their parents. The town was a stop on the railroad line; my grandfather was the foreman of a railway maintenance crew. I also saw the school that she attended. The town had declined considerably since my mother lived there and there were only a few homes occupied in the 1960s. It was nice to be able to see where my mother grew up and lived during her childhood. I could better relate to her stories of her youth by imagining her in this town.