Showing posts from August, 2007

Losing Claremont

This summer I must say goodbye to my childhood home in Claremont, California. My father has sold his house and will move away forever in two weeks. I feel like I'm reading the last few sentences of a cherished novel.

My parents and I, along with my two younger sisters and brothers, moved to Claremont from Rolling Meadows, Illinois soon after the Chicago blizzard of ’76. It was a record-breaking storm that left snow piled so high you had to dig yourself out of your front door. For a kid my age, playing outside was like navigating an alien planet. You’d go out in your puffy astronaut attire, and your feet would begin to sink all the way down to your waist. If you weren’t careful, you just might be sucked into a cold white, endless void and disappear.

So Claremont was a foreign, but welcome place. As we arrived at the airport and headed toward our new home, the California palm trees beckoned us like pillars along a palace entrance. Dad had purchased a new house already, and it was empt…