Other People’s Pasts
Learning about your family history is always interesting, but what about learning about someone else’s? I recently had the opportunity to visit the hometown of my significant other. We’ve known each other two years and I consider myself to know him quite well. What an awakening I was in for!
As we drove around, all the stories he had told me came to life. He grew up in a small, east coast town, and as you can imagine, many of the shops and restaurants are not what they used to be. Hearing about how the town has changed reminded me that our entire country has given in to chains and big box stores and left mom and pop behind. It was also fun to be reminded of how things appear in the mind of a child. “That backyard used to be huge!” and some trees that were perhaps two or three rows deep that were thought to “go off into the forest,” were testaments to how big the world is when one is so small.
What I really loved, though, was watching his face as he got excited about a particular place we visited: the baseball field with so many good memories, the convenience store down the street to see if the same owner is still there; it brought about even more stories I had never heard, and these stories gave me more insight into the man I love. I believe the trip was more enlightening for me than it was for him.
If you haven’t had the opportunity to explore your history, or the history of someone close to you, I highly suggest it. It’s so much more fun to experience it than just listen to stories. If you want to go even further back into your genealogy, I have friends who can help you with that and can even plan a trip around it (visit www.heirloomheritagetours.com)! But even if you’re just driving around the old neighborhood, take some time to revisit the past. You may be surprised by what you learn about yourself and others.