Today’s just been a whole stroll down memory lane kind of day; and well my strolling, gets you a peek into my childhood, so guess your gain as well as mine! Yes in the tags I’m using the name I use for my pseudonym that way if my family doesn’t have to worry about being tied to my fanfiction as well. Also the photo credit belongs to my dad, I edited it to crop out anything tying to where it was since the hose has changed since then and a new family owns it. Figured they wouldn’t want to have problems either.
To start off, we (my brother and I) grew up without a lot of the ‘cool’ things a lot of kids in the 80’s had. My first bike was bought second hand, and was really a rusty thing, though we painted it (a loud neon green! Hey product of the 80’s and damn proud of it thanks) and while it really was too big for me I learned to ride on it.
Before I started kindergarten or first grade (I can’t remember exactly when) we got our home in Fairbanks. I remember we had been living there for a little while, well on that street. My grandparents lived there and we were living with them and their blind and stupid poodle (I hated that thing!). When we first moved into the place we were the caretakers of it, the family that lived there before had moved out of state and wanted someone to watch the place so we did… a year later they decided to sell it to us.
The house was really no more than a shack when we got it. One story, it was about the size of a cargo trailer. Until I was about nine or ten my brother and I shared a bedroom that was really no more than a pantry with a bunk bed in it, our toy box (yes one box) was tucked under it. I had the top bunk so a little privacy.
The room outside our curtained door was the dining room with a huge picture window in the back of the house. In the winter it would be so frosted over we couldn’t see the woods outside. Our kitchen was raised two steps off the main floor, with a dishwasher in the far corner (We could never open it all the way because the sink was in the way) the stove next to it with some space for the garbage can. The counter took up the inner part of the wall-less kitchen. You stepped down crossed the hall (three foot wide area) to the bathroom where there was the tub, a shelving area for the towels and TP, the toilet, sink, a closet area where dad kept the equipment for his dark room, the washer, and the drier which always had the plight projector for developing film on, and also kept us from slamming open the door (the drier made it so that the door would stop flush with it).
Going out the door again and going right would take you down that short little ‘hall’ where you had to work your way around the dresser; where my brother’s and I’s clothes were kept, Mom’s china cabinet, the corner shelving unit with dad’s knick knacks from Japan, to get to the living room area; where Dad had his old wooden oak desk that had the area you pulled out for a typewriter and the fake leather top… The old couch we’d huddle and watch movies on, across from it the entertainment center which really the best piece of the system we had… Dad’s stereo with its reel to reel, record player, the huge speakers that took up a lot of room, but sounded better than going to the movie theater, and the bookshelf that housed all of dad’s records. Five shelves crammed full of everything; Bruce Springsteen, Cream, America, Bruce Hornsby, Beatles, Eagles… So many more bands that I remember listening to but for the life of me while I write this can’t remember. The radio stations didn’t come in too clear on the stereo, not because it sucked, but because we were in a hollow and in a time pre-digital so the radio waves just kind of skipped over us.
The far corner of this room had an old woodstove that we used for heating, and the right hand side had a large window that looked out over at that point a horrible lawn (We later planted the garden in the front, had the woodpile in the back and a side yard that was great to run around barefooted in). To the right of that was the master bedroom with only enough room really for mom and dad’s dresser, and their large water bed, which my brother and I would jump on to wake our parents up on Sundays. Saturdays we’d wake them up with our cartoons.
Between the entertainment system and the woodstove was the door out, which lead to a screened in porch where we had a freezer, all dad’s tools, and another toy box of stuff that me and my brother played with. In the winter we’d pull our bikes up onto the porch to get them out of the elements, but when they weren’t there, we had a place to play board games on rainy days. The porch was only as wide as the house, and about six feet deep, so not a lot of space, though for us when we were little, it was ours.
So many memories in that place, and now a new family with little kids owns it, making memories of their own in it. I just hope that someday I stumble on to a blog with stories about it like I’ll be posting here.