Firstly, apologies that I am posting this so early, although it is Monday morning for at least some of the Mumpers (TYVM, you know who you are :)). At any rate, let’s get on with the show …
I was born in Delaware, but from age 3 to 11, I lived in Michigan. I loved Michigan; all four of my brothers were born there. The first town we lived in, from 55-57, was a very small town just over the border with Ohio, Morenci. I don’t have many memories of Morenci, unfortunately, and the only pictures I have were from the photo albums my parents kept. I have recently been in touch with a playmate from those days, though, and she was going there for a visit and is going to share pictures with me. I told her that most of my memories of the town centered around the two main playgrounds.
The next town we lived in was Comstock Park, which is a suburb of Grand Rapids. It is also in a tornado alley; I don’t remember ever seeing a tornado, but I do recall seeing the aftermath of one. This is where I went to kindergarten – at the height of the baby boom generation; my morning class had -56- students! The school system was so over crowded that for part of first grade, they had to hold the classes in the basement of a nearby church. Somehow, I can’t imagine that happening today—especially since they use those portable classrooms. We only lived there for a year and a half, moving in February 1959. Oh, one vacation we took to Silver Lake, over near Lake Michigan, and took a dune buggy ride—great fun if you ever get the chance to do it!
My favorite place we lived in Michigan, though, was Manistee; right on Lake Michigan! Beautiful beaches – I learned to swim in Lake Michigan – but lots of snow during the winter! We had pictures of the kids standing on these huge piles of snow!! My two youngest brothers were born in Manistee. My best friend lived right next door, and I probably spent more time there than I did at home. We’re still in touch to this day. In 1962, though, we moved from Manistee to Interlochen, where both parents taught at the Interlochen Arts Academy the first year it was open. At the end of the year, my mom was asked back but my dad was not, so the family ended up coming back east, where my dad continued training to become an Episcopal priest (all those moves were mostly due to him being a minister; he was trained originally as a Baptist, switched to Congregational when we went to Michigan, then moved to the Episcopal church).
I hope this isn’t too discombobulated! I love Michigan, but haven’t been able to return for a visit since a family vacation there in 1968. I know it’s changed dramatically since then, but it’s good that I have all my familiar memories.