I had an early-morning meeting today. On the way I over I cruised through the neighborhood I grew up in, to see the changes and ignite the coals of nostalgia. It jump-started me to thinking about the places I played at when I was a young Bear.
Up until the age of twelve (12), I lived in west Toledo. We then moved to the Shoreland area of Toledo, along the Ottawa River. Some memories:
Lincolnshire Woods.....The Lincolnshire neighborhood of Toledo was just west of the Westgate Shopping Center area. Between the neighborhood and the stores was a large wooded area that we called "Lincolnshire Woods". It was filled with bike trails, tree forts, rasberry patches in the open areas, deer and possum, etc. A lot of my youth was spent in that woods. Ted Nugent would be proud.
In the early-to-mid 1970's it was all bulldozed and what was then Toledo's premier office park, complete with high-rise buildings, filled that space. This morning as I drove down Executive Parkway my mind went back to a different time, when the world was far different.
New Houses Under Construction.....When we moved to the Shoreland area of north Toledo we were one (1) of the first houses built in a development of ranch homes, tri-levels, and bi-levels.....known as The Riviera. Young teenage boys love to play in houses that are under construction.....and that's exactly what we did. We played hide-n-seek, tag, war, and king of the mountain at those construction sights. For some odd reason, "girls" started becoming more important, too, when we wandered over to the new construction.
The Ottawa River.....Every boy should grow up by a body of water. We spent a lot of time down by the Ottawa River, Toledo's smaller river that feeds Maumee Bay (and Lake Erie). At our location in Shoreland the river is about a quarter of a mile wide.
In the summer we made rafts, rebuilt small boats and tried to float them, swam in the boat marina (very polluted.....didn't bother me, bother me, bother me.....). In the winter we played hockey and played out in the center of the river with sleds and sticks, all the while watching out for the older teenage boys who would take their cars on the river and see how many "donuts" they could do.
Perhaps my obsession with roads and maps took a turn for the better just about this time. My younger brother and I mapped out in the snow, on the ice, a huge city, with roads, expreessways and open water (rivers), etc. We made the roads by shuffling our feet. It was a giant map! (Mmmmmmmm........)
Cyburbia is filled with folks who lived in many different types of surroundings. Where did YOU play when you were a kid? What say you?
Bear The Really Bad Skater