If you are a follower, or have read a couple of my blogs, you have probably already have figured out that I come from Chicago. I am German, but grew up (until end of high school) in a northwest suburb of Chicago.
It's where I come from, which is somehow a part of me, but it's not who I am. I think many of you can relate to that if you also have lived in different places or even different countries during the course of your life.
Around five years ago, I decided to look up the house that I had grown up in. I hadn't been back to that town or seen the house in over 30 years. I didn't recognize the entire street at all. If I hadn't known were I was, I would have sworn this was not where I was from.
The houses to the left and right must have been torn down because the current houses are completely different than what was there before. That is just starting to happen in Germany but usually the houses which are being torn down are a hundred years old. My old house looks somewhat the same with the red brick facade but that's about it.
All of the trees in the front yard are gone. It made me sad to see that they had also removed the tree which my father had planted with my brother when he was just six years old.
That trip, I reunited with my oldest girlfriend who was my best friend during the school years. She just happened to also be in the area and visiting relatives at the same time. After high school she had also moved away from our hometown to go to college. Over the 30 years we have stayed in touch, which will mean something to everyone in my generation, because keeping in touch before there was the Internet, email, Facebook or whatsapp was a lot more difficult.
That day we had a fun time cruising around our old hometown in her brother's Jeep with the top down, it made us feel like teenagers again.