Wednesday, May 9, 2012
Memories of Childhood at the Villas, NJ
This pic is taken "down the shore" which to us was always the Villas, NJ. My parents didnt vacation in Wildwood or Cape May, NJ, nooo, my mom's mother lived in the Villas, so that's where we always were on our trips to "the shore". As the house in the background shows, most houses in this small retirement community were one floor bungalows with a tiny living room, an eat in kitchen, a bathroom and two nice sized bedrooms. Every Easter and Thanksgiving we visited grandmom down the shore and stayed for that holiday weekend. Every summer we'd be down there most of the week. Grandmom would brave the winters by herself down there, as grandpop had died when I was just 3 or so. She loved our visits and loved us and hugged us so hard whenever we arrived. I dont ever remember her being truly mad at us or yelling at my parents, ever! My younger sister and I were allowed to, as we got older, go one block down the road to the bay shore. It was littered with horseshoe crabs and my favorite thing: tons and tons of ocean pebbles. All different sizes and shapes. I've collected them for years. I remember that the beach was on a downward slope from the road and we had to scoot down this slope, getting sand in our shoes. We had to wear shoes because the beach was littered with occasional glass and worse yet: sand burrs! They were extremely sharp and would be hard to extricate from a foot/shoe/sock etc...
I remember that shore house....the big back yard...my great aunt's house next door...my cousins would come down and we'd have others to play with. They had a swing set. We'd swing on it and sing songs. Mainly, the theme to The Greatest American Hero, and You Light up my Life! WOWWWW soo funny, we were some corny kids, but we had so much fun playing and dreaming.
My sister and I would play all kinds of board games, mainly chinese checkers (which is alot of fun) and cards--mainly WAR, which game could go on and on and on and onnnnn without a winner. I remember reading and loving to read outside. I remember singing Air Supply songs into the fan in my mother's room and hearing my voice go all funny from the fan rippling the air.
I remember Easter egg hunts, dyeing eggs, going to my grandmother's baptist church. I remember the smell of the shore....that damp, musty, salty smell....and my grandmom's damn moth balls in her armoire.
My sister took pics of these ancient pics my dad has of us as kids with her iphone and posted them; so naturally all these memories come flooding back: the wild honeysuckle that grew on the chain link fence between properties, the grass that grew as tall as me when noone lived next door--running thru that grass with wild wonder, the blue jays and robins, the seagulls and snails, the homemade rice pudding grandmom painstakingly made at the stove -- just for us -- every time we came down, the horrible violent thunderstorms, the allergies from freshly cut grass, the cot that my sister and i had to take turns sleeping on --one of us on the cot one night, in grandmoms bed with her the next, grandmoms snoring like a freight train!, grandmom playing rummicube (she loved that game) and kicking our ass, the wiiiiind at Thanksgiving that was cold and damp and wicked which made me feel alive, the beach when wicked winds came which made the otherwise quiet bay waters whitecap in a fury, the sandbars -- oh the wonder of them, singing songs in the car on the way to the shore, getting in fights with my sister on the way to the shore, my 11th birthday at the shore.... there's so much more....that i've probably forgotten.