I made a very quick trip home this past weekend because my parents are moving out of their house after 48 years. I wanted to see the house that I grew up in one last time before they sell it and some one else gets a chance to make memories there.
Fittingly enough it was also Father’s Day weekend and my nephew Alex was graduating from high school, so I got to cover multiple bases with one trip.
My parents would probably argue this point, but they really should have moved out probably about 5 years ago. They are “getting up there in years” and taking care of the house and yard was getting harder and harder every year. The perfect sign that it was time was when my dad went against his true frugal yankee roots and started paying people to do yard work, plow the driveway and things like that.
One of the things that slowly dawned on me a week or two ago as this move out date drew closer was that I really didn’t have any remorse or sad feelings about my parents selling the house. Yes, it is the house I grew up in. Yes it has truly been the center of the Rhodes Family Universe forever. But, it’s just a house. Bow, NH will always be my hometown and the town I identify with as my birthplace. A house doesn’t make me who I am or define my character. Those things are the product of my upbringing, you can thank (or blame) my parents, siblings, and friends for who I am, not the house.
I do have many fond memories of Robinson Rd. Hanging out with friends in the basement after pond hockey, swimming in the pool with cousins, tromping around the woods across the street and mountain biking all the trails in the area. Bow was a great town to learn to ride a road bike from too, you couldn’t get back into town without going up some sort of hill.
Our neighborhood was great for games of baseball, kick the can, bloody murder, hide-n-seek, basketball, etc. There were plenty of kids in the area for having fun (and sometimes getting in trouble with).
This trip was a quick one, I did a red eye on Friday night into Boston. Paul picked me up at Logan and we drove back to his house in Bow after hitting up the Concord Farmer’s Market for some Rolling in the Dough doughnuts. Shannon and I went to pick up my mom for Alex’s graduation party and it gave me a chance to surprise her (only Paul and Shannon knew I was coming back). Several hours of hanging out with family at Steve and Alison’s house celebrating Alex, then back to Paul and Shannon’s and a nice talk with my niece Khrystine after eveyone else had gone to bed.
Sunday we moved the bulk of the large furniture items out of my parents house and into their new apartment in a 55+ community. It is INSANE how much stuff you can accumulate after being in the same house for 48 years. Plus they are moving into something roughly half the size as the house and without all the peripheral storage (shed, pool house, porch, deck, etc).
After moving them for the bulk of the day Steve, Alison, Shannon, Paul, Elizabeth, Jacob, Noah and I all met at Margaritas for dinner followed up by ice cream at Arnie’s Place. Then I had a short power nap and was at the bus station for 3AM to make a 7Am flight out of Boston and back to Oregon.
I didn’t get to spend enough time with my parents and I didn’t see any of my other friends or Mia’s side of the family. This trip was worth it though. I got to say goodbye to 93 Robinson Rd, and I got to spend time with my family. My parents aren’t getting any younger, and there have been some health issues with both of them recently so it was good time get home for that alone.
I love you Mom and Dad and cannot thank you enough for everything that you have done for me. I know moving out of the house isn’t easy, but you’re doing the right thing.
Thanks to Paul and Shannon for housing me on my quick trip too.
Thanks for reading,