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  1. #1
    Nobody mconlonx's Avatar
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    You can't go back home

    Last night, wife and I were noodling around online, checking out routes from SF to LA. South, it passes right by where I used to live, Edwards AFB. Zoom in on the Google Earth to check it out, try to find where I was living 3 decades ago...

    Not there. Just desert and a series of dirt roads outlining what used to be neighborhoods. Bulldozed between the mid-70s and now.

    I had to find the schools and retrace my walking route back home to figure it out.

    Not that there was anything special about the house where we lived. 3 bedroom ranch, cinderblock construction, typically industrial military on-base housing.

    I remember when test planes flew overhead at Mach 1+ -- we'd see a plane go by overhead, silently, and then a few seconds later the sound would catch up with an initial sonic boom which nearly shook the sliding glass patio doors to pieces every time it happened. You could see the glass ripple and flex. Gone. House up the street, family with 5 kids, some of whom were neighborhood friends or classmates in elementary school, their dad was a test pilot who crashed and died, which meant they moved out suddenly. Gone. Other friend's yard, where we turned nearly half of it into a hotwheels/matchbox car complex complete with water hazards. Gone.

    Desert where we blasted around in dad's dune buggy? Still there...

    The outlines of the stone walls between houses are still there; ghosts of the paved roads still exist; other neighborhoods are still extant.

    I expected things would have changed. Seeing where I used to live -- a whole neighborhood -- wiped out is a bit disconcerting. Especially since they haven't rebuilt. Like... what was there that they had to tear housing down without replacement...? On an air force base used for experimental purposes...?
    I know next to nothing. I am frequently wrong.

  2. #2
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Where my wife and I first lived is now a freeway ramp. Nothing of the neighborhood exists. It is all paved over now, not even "outlines." We lived there 30 years ago.

  3. #3
    Senior Member eja_ bottecchia's Avatar
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    Hey, at least Google maps shows your childhood 'hood. Try checking up my childhood home in Havana, many of the views are blocked.
    My current stable:

    1989 SLX Bottecchia (Campy Athena 11s)
    1999 Cannondale F400 mountain bike
    2012 Bianchi Infinito (Campy Record 11s)
    2012 Colnago C59 in PR99 color scheme (Campy Record 11s)

  4. #4
    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    I bought the house I grew up in, so I did go back home.
    Are you a registered member? Why not? Click here to register. It's free and only takes 27 seconds! Help out the forums, abide by our community guidelines.
    Quote Originally Posted by colorider View Post
    Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.

  5. #5
    Can'tre Member 3alarmer's Avatar
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    My understanding is they do the removal to discourage campers, squatters, Manson families....that sort of thing.

    There are plenty of very strange individuals roaming the American deserts.

    The two AFB shutdowns here (Mather and Mclellan) ended up with some of the housing intact and sold at market,
    some removed and either rebuilt as something else or rebuilt by spec house guys.

    They actually found some uses for the strip and terminal buildings at Mather as an air shipping hub.


    Might have something to do with age, condition, and whatever the market was at the time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Terrierman View Post
    No wonder everybody hates you.

  6. #6
    rider of older bikes bici_mania's Avatar
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    This is true.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/You_Can%27t_Go_Home_Again

    A few years ago my brother and I were in Houston for a funeral, we decided to go down to Galveston and revisit our childhood. Everything has changed and many of the places I new are either not there or have changed so much that they are no longer recognizable.

    When I was 11 I got sent to a home/school that was effectively an orphanage. About two years ago I was trying to explain to my children what it was like to live there and so I decided to pull it up on Google Earth. I learned that it was being torn down, it had closed a few years earlier under unfortunate circumstances.

    About a year ago I came across an old friend from my twenties on FB and made contact. Most of the people I spent that decade of my life with are either in prison, dead, fell off the face of the earth. Of those that remain, none of them are interested in contact with me.

    My past crumbles and is swept away under my feet. Those that see their past erode like this are typically twice my age. This has been accentuated by a recent and unexpected metaphysical shift in my life.

    I have come to a point that I see and know only what is right now, in this instant. There is no past and there is no future. I have my wife and children, I have a bike. All of this might change in an instant but if I can ride my bike, I will probably be okay.

    The house we live in is the house that my wife grew up in from age 11 and now our children are growing up there. I am comforted in knowing they have a home to which they can always return, even after I am gone.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z645MnME160
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e771_0pheVQ&noredirect=1
    Life is like a ten speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use. - Charles M. Schulz

  7. #7
    Administrator Allen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsharr View Post
    I bought the house I grew up in, so I did go back home.
    I bought a lot that abuts the family spread because my lifelong goal is to die in the house where I was born.

  8. #8
    You Know!? For Kids! jsharr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allen View Post
    I bought a lot that abuts the family spread because my lifelong goal is to die in the house where I was born.
    You need help with that? MV has a bow and knows where you live.
    Are you a registered member? Why not? Click here to register. It's free and only takes 27 seconds! Help out the forums, abide by our community guidelines.
    Quote Originally Posted by colorider View Post
    Phobias are for irrational fears. Fear of junk ripping badgers is perfectly rational. Those things are nasty.

  9. #9
    Administrator Allen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jsharr View Post
    You need help with that? MV has a bow and knows where you live.
    Come to think of it my personal accountant is a bow maker as well.
    I wonder if bing that "primitive weapons construction" is a seemingly common hobby in the financial sector means something.


    Back to Modo. I'm good with that. I want a viking burial in the pond afterwords. Use the green canoe that's on the bank, it leaks anyway.

  10. #10
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    All 18 places that I have ever lived at are still doing well. I was looking at the last place on google street view a couple of days ago, admiring how a tiny native tree that I had transplanted was thriving. It has grown to over 20 feet high and dominates a neighbor's row of hibiscus as I had hoped.

    My schools have had more varied fates. My kindergarten is still alive and well. My first elementary school has been completely rebuilt on site. It didn't move, but was completely rearranged. My first Jr. High has been turned into condos. The one built to replace it, a brand new building that we moved into in the middle of the school year, has been torn down and the vacant lot is for sale. My prep school moved and the old building was razed for some apartments. Most of the buildings I've been employed in are still there, many of the businesses are not.
    Last edited by Artkansas; 10-17-13 at 04:31 PM.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  11. #11
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allen View Post
    I bought a lot that abuts the family spread because my lifelong goal is to die in the house where I was born.
    I was born in a hospital. I guess it wouldn't be that difficult to die there.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  12. #12
    Animated Member ahsposo's Avatar
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    I was doing something similar to the OP and thought to get the street view of a house I lived in as a 4 to 9 year old.

    When I visited as a teen the place was looking pretty good but now (roughly 40 years later) the whole neighborhood has turned into a run-down low rent ugly place. Caused a bit of sad to see.
    Quote Originally Posted by toddles View Post
    If I gotta look up words, it's not worth my time.

  13. #13
    Administrator Allen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artkansas View Post
    I was born in a hospital. I guess it wouldn't be that difficult to die there.
    Home birth for me. I was born during a flood. Road washed out.

  14. #14
    NFL Owner monogodo's Avatar
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    Great, now you've got me looking up everywhere I lived as a child (that I can remember).

    approx. half of 2nd grade -3rd grade - Weyauwega, WI. It appears the apartment building we lived in is still there. The elementary school is now connected to the high school, making one large building.
    4th-6th grade - Menasha, WI. The duplex is still there, but the cinder block dog house my dad built is gone. The elementary school has more than doubled in size. The Jr. High building is now part of the local community college campus.
    7th-8th grade - Dodgeville, WI. The 100+ year old farmhouse on County Hwy YZ near Military Ridge Trail is still there. The Middle School is now on the other side of the High School. Not sure what the old Middle School building is now, there's no street view available.
    9th & most of 10th grade - Lake Delton, WI. The 100+ year old farmhouse is still there. It is on my mom's farm, and is the house she grew up in. After her parents died, she bought out her siblings' interest in the farm & moved into the new(er) house.
    End of 10th grade through graduation - Wisconsin Dells, WI. The house is still there. The fence around the front yard is gone, and it's in better condition than when we rented it.

    I spent 2nd grade in 3 different schools (Oshkosh, Stevens Point, & Weyauwega, all in WI). First grade was in North Augusta, SC, and Kindergarten was in Sardis, GA. I have memories of the places we lived, but no idea what the address would be. I was able to track down the elementary school I went to in Stevens Point (Jackson), but other than that, I haven't a clue. I was able to track down the house we lived in in Portage, WI, before we moved to Georgia. It helps that I remember it being next to a curling rink.

    Yeah, we moved around a lot. Papa was a rolling stone & all that.
    198? Colnago Super (Campy Record) | 1989 Eddy Merckx 7-Eleven Team Issue (Dura Ace) | Catamount MFS (1x8) | Top Image Neptune (SS)

  15. #15
    Pedaled too far. Artkansas's Avatar
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    According to the Urban Dictionary, the name of one town I lived in is now a synonym for marijuana.
    "He who serves all, best serves himself" Jack London

    Quote Originally Posted by Bjforrestal View Post
    I don't care if you are on a unicycle, as long as you're not using a motor to get places you get props from me. We're here to support each other. Share ideas, and motivate one another to actually keep doing it.

  16. #16
    Senior Member
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    All the homes I lived in are still there. The home I was born in is still there and doing well. The first two homes I lived in as a baby through college are old triple deckers over years old. They were built during the heyday of the garment industry in Fall River, MA. My mom still lives in FR and I visit a couple of times yearly and always make a point to jog/run through my old neighborhoods. It brings back many very happy memories...there are also unhappy ones but whose life doesn't have some trying times?...
    The grammar school I went to is still there but closed and basically just a large brick storage building. The church I was baptised, etc. in is gone. It could not support itself and was torn down a few years ago. The statues, windows, etc. went to other churches and most everything was salvaged.

    My high school is now a court house and is in good condition...it was a very old, stone building and quite beautiful but could not keep up with modern needs but at least it is still being used and cared for.

    Older cities tend to stick around longer than most and it is always interesting to me to think of the lives, etc. of all the people that lived there before me and after me.

  17. #17
    Senior Member bikebuddha's Avatar
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    Only one house I lived in as a kid still stands. I wonder if the backyard still floods in a heavy rain.
    The few, the proud, the likely insane, Metro-Atlanta bicycle commuters.

  18. #18
    Bike hoarder. Murray Missile's Avatar
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    I live a block and a half from where I grew up, however the house I lived in is gone, our yard is now an empty lot and the lot that was my dad's garden is now a restaurant. I gave the people that own it now pictures of the old home place because they were trying to decorate with photos of the town as it was years ago. Next time we went in they had them framed and matted and on the walls so that was pretty cool. The entire town has changed dramatically since I was a kid. The 3 buildings I attended public school in have all been converted to apartments. Not one of the 5 gas stations that existed 35 years ago are still there, half the business district has been torn down and not replaced and a half block of what is left is scheduled for demolition soon. The grain elevator that stood on the main highway since the 1930's was just torn down last week. The railroads that crisscrossed the county 50 years ago are all gone and much of the roadbed bulldozed out to expand farm fields. My Grandfather and Father lived here their entire lives but if they came back today they wouldn't know where they were. Sometimes even if you stay put you can't go home again.....

  19. #19
    Senior Member bikebuddha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bikebuddha View Post
    Only one house I lived in as a kid still stands. I wonder if the backyard still floods in a heavy rain.
    I just looked up the old place on Zillow. Foreclosed on, looks like it will sell for less than what we got when we moved out in May 1980.

    http://www.zillow.com/homedetails/41...14482300_zpid/
    The few, the proud, the likely insane, Metro-Atlanta bicycle commuters.

  20. #20
    Third World Layabout crtreedude's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allen View Post
    Come to think of it my personal accountant is a bow maker as well.
    I wonder if bing that "primitive weapons construction" is a seemingly common hobby in the financial sector means something.


    Back to Modo. I'm good with that. I want a viking burial in the pond afterwords. Use the green canoe that's on the bank, it leaks anyway.
    Perhaps you have something like this in mind?


  21. #21
    Third World Layabout crtreedude's Avatar
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    I did a quick Google Earth on where I was from 7 to 16, and it is still there, I am happy to be able to report that the 8 foot wooden fence that I have very bad memories of painting frequently is gone... and the driveway I used to shovel all the time so my father could go to work is just as long as I remember.

    At the same time, I pulled up Google for where we currently live. Sorry folks, I really am not interested in going back home, I like where I am now.

    A comparison

    Cattaragus Drive, Rochester, Henrietta, NY, United States - Then

    San Rafael de Guatuso, Alajuela Costa Rica - Now

    I was fortunate in having a very good childhood compared to many, but honesty, I am more interested in where I will be in 10 years, than where I came from. That little kid who lived in the new development (which it was at the time) never imagined he would have gone so many places and done so many interesting things...

  22. #22
    K2ProFlex baby! ilikebikes's Avatar
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    I was born in North Philly, factory workers and such, basically poor "ghetto" like area. It was def going more ghetto when we moved in, and was most def ghetto when famly moved out (my immediate family that is) Being its still a ghetto with no change in sight I'm pretty sure itll be there when Im long gone. Ghetto dwellers don't have a lot of cash, they have to save money to get things fixed and they def have to do the work themselves, which usually means a job done right the first time. (as most cant afford a second time)
    Last edited by ilikebikes; 10-19-13 at 09:35 AM.
    You see, their morals, their code...it's a bad joke, dropped at the first sign of trouble. They're only as good as the world allows them to be. I'll show you. When the chips are down, these...These "civilized" people...they'll eat each other. See, I'm not a monster. I'm just ahead of the curve

  23. #23
    Pwnerer Wordbiker's Avatar
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    If I tried to go back to where I was born...Mom would be quite upset.
    Quote Originally Posted by ahsposo View Post
    Ski, bike and wish I was gay.

  24. #24
    Rogue Cyclist RaleighSport's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Allen View Post
    Come to think of it my personal accountant is a bow maker as well.
    I wonder if bing that "primitive weapons construction" is a seemingly common hobby in the financial sector means something.


    Back to Modo. I'm good with that. I want a viking burial in the pond afterwords. Use the green canoe that's on the bank, it leaks anyway.
    I'm gonna suggest pjitewass just be sure it's not the wooden one.
    "Seriously is what I want to be, so I put on spandex and show off my gear, my junk, my thing, yes my ding-a-ling."

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