I go to this town often, but haven't actually walked my old neighborhood in the downtown area in many years. It brought back a flood of memories.
We lived in this old yellow house that was actually a couple of small houses somehow spliced together. It's floors were sloping when we lived there and to my knowledge it hasn't been upgraded since.
To get to the back bedroom you walked (downhill) through the brown shag-carpeted bathroom (I do hope at least that carpet has been replaced!). It's sad to see that the big sycamores are gone and the yard isn't kept up. But this is the house that Cam and I spent our days hanging out together. Where he learned to ride his Batman trike on the porch (and infamously painted himself and rode the trike Lady Godiva style) and where Sis was born in that back bedroom with the local fire department in attendance!
We moved just 5 months after Sis was born, but the memories of taking walks through that historic old neighborhood with Cam came flooding back as I walked the roads with a different dog at the end of my leash:
Back then we had Dusty who was just as good and loyal as our Sue.
I remember oftentimes being lonely in that house. I didn't have any friends, and felt isolated from my family in Sacramento. Cam and I attended La Leche League meetings in Lodi (and hour and a half drive) and storytime at the Sonora Library to get a little bit of socialization.
I had my moments when it was really hard, of course being a first-time mom is a learning experience to be sure, but there were tons of good memories from those times too.
We loved walking downtown to the donut shop or to the park. We grew strawberries in our yard and Cam and the dog and I spent many hours in that yard playing, exploring, and even hanging laundry and cloth diapers on the old clothes line. I found an old bottle there and would often wonder who the other moms were who used this little drying yard for their babies' diapers.
Having my mom visit was always a treat, and back then there were quite a few cool shops downtown to look through. We also had some great family gatherings there for Cam's 2nd and 3rd birthdays.
We lived just behind the theater and what was then called Scott's Tavern. Walking past that corner bar on Sunday it still smelled of stale beer and cigarettes. There were quite a few evenings where we be woken up by a drunken brawl or loud partiers from the bar.
It was quite a nostalgic walk, and I will treasure all my memories from those times, both good and bad. Those were my first years as a mom, and the first years really being a real grown up.