The House On Parkwood

10:58 AM


The last time that I saw this house, I was about 9 years old. It was a hot summer day, and I was crammed into the very back of our old station wagon with my younger brother Mark. We were with our parents, our younger brother David, and our Great Grandmother, who we called Busia. I remember not getting out of the car, but the narrow street being pretty crowded with cars. Back then, I vaguely knew that this house held some sort of sentimental importance, but it was just lumped in with the other houses and trailers that we used to live in, and would occasionally drive past. This one was even more alien to me, because I never went inside it. That and the fact that it is so huge. Big houses always meant that there were nice things in it that you could not touch, you had to take your shoes off when you came in, and basically behave yourself which is the exact opposite of what I wanted to do. 

I remember asking my parents about this house later on, where it was (somewhere in Detroit), could we drive past it, and was usually told that we would someday. Then a few weeks ago, I just got a bug up my ass about the house. I wanted to see the house where my Busia grew up, where my mother used to stay when she was a kid. I wanted to see the store on the corner where my mother used to walk to buy candy and junk food. I wanted to test my childhood memory and see if what I remembered was correct, a game that I sometimes like to play and am always fascinated by the the small details that are usually off. Was the carpet in our first trailer orange, or green? I don't remember, but it was shag carpet dammit.

Obviously, we found the house, and the corner store. 


Neither of my parents could tell me the address of the house, and my dad could barely remember the correct street name. They knew it was off of Michigan and Center, so I was told to Google a car dealership over that way and read off street names. Parkwood it was, and luckily that street is only three blocks or so long. I then used Google maps street view to look at houses, while my mom described it for me, and I found it right away. Isn't that kind of creepy, and yet awesome? Anywho, I convinced Kyle, Chris, and Michelle to drive past the house the other weekend. I am so lucky to have such awesome in-laws who are always up for taking fantastic photos of things, seriously guys, you are THE BEST. 

The neighborhood isn't as exciting as some of the other areas of the city, but it wasn't bad by any means. There were lots of people outside, kids playing in the street (like they do), a taco truck out on the next block, a very family area. The house itself was in pretty good shape! It is a duplex now, but my Busia's father had it built when they came over from Poland. Can you imagine? They had this big ass house built, and we could hardly put anything down on our lovely little shack.  It breaks my heart that it sold in January for $4,000, not that I would have had the money to buy it-tempting as that is-I would have loved to see the inside of that house. My Mom says that it was beautiful, with wood banisters, and that when she was a kid, there was always loads of old stuff to paw through. 

Between seeing this house, and driving past my old apartment in Ypsilanti, I would really like to take photos of all of the places that I used to live. You know how Millennials are, we must document ALL of the things! I think that might have to be a project to tackle before the year is out. Plus, is it totally fun to stand in front of houses taking pictures like a total weirdo.

Blogging has turned me into such a creep. 


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11 Musings

  1. I like the pictures! The house is really neat looking!! And you are the second person I've come across who calls a grandparent Busia - that is really interesting to me!

  2. I only lived in two houses growing up, but I still love to drive by them both to see what's changed.

  3. What a cool looking house! I live in the same town where I grew up, though I generally don't go and look at the two houses, since I don't like the way they've changed. My dad grew up in Vancouver and I don't think I've ever seen any of the houses he lived in.

  4. Oh such a lovely old house..with I'm sure some great old bones, too. Such a historical site too. ..and the memories you and your parents can talk about.

  5. Sweet post. Glad you did this. Its sentiments make me think of the old place in our family..which is way out in the middle of the country.

    I have dreams of that old house. Oddly..yet sad..the old house that I was sure would have been torn down by nature by now..was bought and moved. I dunno where.

    Great that you could at least visit the place. Such a rich history!

  6. Such a wonderful post. Great that you blogged about it. You are very inspiring!

  7. I kind of love that house. Like, I want to live in it kind of love.

    P.S. You are so cute in your overalls!!


  8. I love this Sara! I wish you could've seen the inside too! Love your old apartment. I'm still in Cincy and about a week ago, my mom and I were driving around and came upon her grandmother's home she use to stay at during the Summer and pool she use to frequent. It felt so cool!

  9. Kudos to you for visiting (and honoring) your past. I do that all the time. It's funny how our perceptions change. When I grew up (nearby), my house felt huge; now, when I go there, it looks like a tiny dirty shack. The house hasn't changed; I have.

    I like your great-grandmother's name. I had a great-grandmother whom I visited in Brooklyn when I was young; I'm not sure what her real name was but everyone called her Toots!

  10. I wished i only lived in 2 houses, we just moved again and i think it is my 12th time...seriously over the crap. But it awesome to revisit the past and see what it has become. Awesome pictures

  11. Sometimes I drive around where I used to live my parents just to look. I don't know why, I just like to feel connected to my old life.


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