I'll miss you when you're gone

Thursday, November 5, 2009

When I was young, I used to to wonder why my parents would get nostalgic over seemingly lame stuff like grocery stores of days gone by or older model cars. Who cares??

Well, I get it now. Sort of. Sometimes I surprise myself by how overly sentimental I feel about silly stuff.

Like Juicy Fruit gum. My grandfather always used to keep two packs in his pocket for me and my sister. He would give it to us and we would rip into it only to find that it had been in his pocket for so long that the gum had melted to the wrapper. It was the most delicious gum I ever had.

Or Fritos. There was a city pool that we went to as kids. I was always allowed one treat from the snack bar and I always chose a bag of Fritos. I would run out of the pool and eat them one by one while my hair dripped all over the bag. When I smell Fritos, I can still see the dolphin in the middle of the baby pool.

Or my mother's bracelets. My mother had a set of gold bracelets that her mother had given her and she only wore them on special occasions. When my parents went out, the older couple next door, Uncle Gene and Auntie Margaret, would babysit. I had huge separation anxiety issues as a child and I would pretend to be asleep while I waited for my parents to come home. As soon as I heard the jingle of the coins on my mother's bracelet, I knew that I would be home safe in my bed soon.

My latest starry eyed sentiment came yesterday when I heard that a roller coaster from an amusement park that I used to go to as a child had received the ACE Roller Coaster Landmark designation, awarded only to coasters of historical significance. The Big Dipper was the 14th oldest roller coaster in the world and the 10th oldest in the United States when Geauga Lake closed in 2007.

All the rides were auctioned off and hauled away, except for the Big Dipper. It was sold for $5,000, significantly lower than the $50,000 it cost to build it in 1925. Lest you think the bidder got a great deal, keep in mind that it will cost upwards of $3 million dollars to move it and no decision has been made yet where that might be. So it sits as a solitary reminder of what used to be.

I have such amazing memories of going to this park as a child and I remember riding the coaster for the first time, certain that I was going to fly out of the seat.

I just spent the last 30 minutes on YouTube watching tributes to Geauga Lake. I was almost brought to tears by one playing Michael Bolton's, How Am I Supposed to Live Without You as the background music when I thought to myself, What the hell is wrong with you?!

Come take a ride with me on this gem. Hold on tight!


  1. That's thrilling, but no more thrilling than all the memories.

  2. I so appreciate your sentiment, Chrissy, because I'm the same way.

    I think there are times in our lives when sentiment hits us very strong. For me, it was when I moved back east to where I was born and began reconnecting to my roots. It brought up so many great sentimental memories for me, and like you...I found myself getting teary-eyed visiting places where as a child, I onced visited with my family. I can actually feel that sentiment as I say this.

    You mentioned two thing here that I too have sentimental memories about. Juicy Fruit gum (which, BTW I just had some). And Fritos. LOVE em' both!

    Great post, my friend. It made me feel all sentimental too!

  3. I think that's a sign of being perimenopausal, getting emotional over a roller coaster.(ducking)

  4. What a great post. makes me think of some of the things i loved most about my childhood, and nothing tops the boardwalk at the jersey shore. i cant wait to bring my stepmonsters and share it with them. hopeuflly next year. thanks for taking me back!!

  5. I totally get it! It's just like the purple and orange Swizzler Double lollies I discovered again the other day. Less colourful than they used to be (damn the ban on artificial colours!) but they taste identical to the 2p ones I bought when I was ten. Gold dust! So we've BOTH gone gooey for nostalgic reasons this last week.

  6. Being as I'm from Pittsburgh, the amuzement park that I visited as a kid was Kennywood. We had the sister of your Big Dipper, the Little Dipper. It's been gone from the park for a long time but I can still remember the first time I rode with my mom! My first introduction to roller coasters wasn't all that great..I ended up crying through most of it but the memory is there all the same! Thanks for the memory jogger!

  7. I found myself in an english sweet shop a few months ago and know exactly where you're coming from on the whole nostalgia thing.

  8. I've been thinking nostalgically about my years in college lately. Especially considering that this fall marked ten years since my freshman year! Where does the time go?

  9. @lee - that was funny! bwahahaha

    Sentimental is my middle name. I don't know where the hell it comes from either. Strange, it's just strange how moved I get about stupid little things.

  10. This post was FABULOUS, sweetie! I guess that's a part of getting (just a teeny bit) older is that we've got all these great memories...wouldn't it be great if everything from our childhoods could never change? Love the ride....I felt like the child-Kathryn sitting next to the child-Chrissy...thanks for taking me along for the ride.
    Now, I'm getting a piece of Juicy Fruit out of my dresser drawer!

  11. Juicy Fruit! Remember Fruit Stripe?

  12. I usually only get nostalgic over food, clouds, smells, movies, sounds, parks, snow, books, shops, wind, songs, trees, hospitals, rain, beaches, mountains, people, stamps in my passport.

  13. @Secretia,
    Yes. :-)

    Yep. You actually CAN go home.

    @Lee the Hot Flash Queen,
    That's so funny I forgot to laugh..

    How fun that will be for them! And you!

    @Indigo Wrath,
    Damn ban on artificial colors!

    I know some people who used to go to Kennywood! I never did myself.

    It just hits you, doesn't it?

    @Judge Fudge,
    Oh, just wait...

    Maybe they put something in Midol to make us this way.

    Well, not EVERYTHING from childhood. Just the good stuff, :-)

    Yes! Do they still make that?

    So I guess you're saying you aren't nostalgic,then?

  14. I can remember a time when I was nostalgic. The wind was rustling through the trees and I had on my new takkies my mother bought from the corner shop. It was a simpler, more innocent time. But I'm not nostalgic anymore.


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