Hung out to Dry

clothesline
Photo taken in Greenville, NY by Alysia Thomas

When I was seven years old, my family moved from the bustling chaos of Long Island to a quiet small town called Greenville in Upstate New York. No longer able to say hello to the crossing guard as we walked to school, we now had long rides on the bus. You know you are far away from the city when you have to drive your car between houses to go trick or treating for Halloween.

I loved climbing trees, riding my bike up the huge hills and then standing on my pedals with my arms raised up to the sky as I floated down the hill. There are so many memories, but this photo reminded me of our clothesline off the back sliding door on to our porch. My mother would carry a basket filled with sheets and towels, shake them out, and hang them with wooden clothespins. My siblings and I helped by pulling the rope that sent the laundry out over our expansive backyard. The Catskill Mountains were a glorious backdrop, especially at sunset. The wind would whip the sheets up into the air where they flapped like newborn birds, and then settle to a sway like grandma in her favorite rocking chair.

The smell of the country air on my pillowcase lulled me to sleep even as the sounds of the night creatures chirped and hooted outside my bedroom window. The world was so simple then, and I miss the freedom of the open space and timelessness of my childhood. But these memories bring me joy, and I’m grateful for them and my childhood home.

What is a favorite childhood memory that you connect to your childhood home? What emotions and feelings does it bring up? You may even find a photo that creates a more detailed recall. Add in senses, descriptions, and details.

2 thoughts on “Hung out to Dry

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