Every once in awhile I get to feeling nostalgic for my childhood. Maybe it happens more as we age and spend more time contemplating our mortality, I don’t know. It’s funny the things that will trigger memories and that feeling of wanting to go ‘home’. Things change so quickly now, it’s hard to feel any sense of belonging or roots or community.
Since I’ve started my new job and have been taking the bus, I get a daily trip down memory lane as the bus passes through a well-kept older neighborhood of modest homes. The houses all have immaculate yards, so I suspect they are under some sort of homeowner’s association. But it’s the houses themselves that I love. They’re all small, one-story affairs, but what they have that most modern construction lacks is real charm. I expect most date back to the 1960s, or 1950s judging by the architecture. Can’t you just see Darrin Stevens driving up to this house in Bewitched?
Of course, their house looked like this:
Ok, it’s two-story, but still quite modest by today’s standards. If you’re feeling nostalgic for the show and that time period, here’s a great site with tons of pics from the sets of the house. Oh, the memories! Quick, somebody rewind time.
I didn’t even grow up in a ranch-style house. The house I grew up in in Massachusetts was a three-story (four, if you count the full basement) farmhouse that dated to the 1850s. Sadly I don’t seem to have any photos of it. (I tried to find a picture online, but the Google streetview shows it completely obscured by trees and other foliage now. What a mess).
But anyway, there’s one house in particular that I love more and more every time I go past it. It’s a dark green/brown color, with shutters as interior window coverings, but the thing I really love about it is all the flowers planted around it outside are white. There are roses, hydrangeas, and I don’t know what all else, but all white. It looks a little like the photo below, although the one in the picture is more ornate than the house on my bus route.
I miss when neighborhoods were made up of these kinds of houses. I really REALLY hate the McMansions that populate today’s suburbs. I think they’re cold, unfriendly, uninviting, and I wouldn’t want to spend much time in one, even as a visitor. I’ve known people who own these houses, and I am always distinctly uncomfortable when I visit. These are not welcoming places, there is no warmth. I like to remember the banged up, muddy screen doors that usually lead into the kitchens of houses where my friends lived. You never felt like an outsider or intruder going into their homes.
Seriously, does this say, “Welcome” in any language? I think I’ll redecorate my house in retro 60s colors. I guess I had a happy childhood.