Thursday, August 4, 2011

Our Town

What a nice surprise today to find that someone in my hometown set up a facebook page called Bridgeton Memory Lane. What a treasure trove of memories flooded the site as people reflected how Bridgeton used to be. About every one hundred memories posted someone would post things like Pepsi Randy, Powderpuff Charlie, Sweet Shop, Giant Subs and more.

Last summer I visited after a few years away. I hardly recognized the worn historical town. It was like watching someone old and wise get dementia. There were bridges out, landmarks gone. It was as if the spirit and dignity were sucked right out of the town’s beautiful soul. Neighborhoods that used to be standouts were dark and dingy with a cultural explosion sitting on worn and stained upholstery couches.

Some of today’s facebook posters blamed the loss of factories, the Cumberland Mall, people like me who left soon after graduation or the influx of different cultural groups.

But today all remembered like the sudden memory bursts of an elderly Alzheimer patient and for a brief moment the soul of our town was shining through the clouds and it was a magnificent thing.