Google Home

I’ve been thinking. Well, I’ve been wallowing is more accurate. So, I haven’t been much inspired to post anything. No. That’s not true either. I’ve wanted to post, but I figured if I did you’d all run away screaming. But a 5.5-mile walk in 90 minutes today while listening to Paul Simon’s “Graceland” album may have helped get me back on track. My sister Dale’s birthday is coming up and, although she’s been gone more than 32 years, this one has been strangely difficult to face.

VAN SICLEN AVENUE, BROOKLYN, NY.

Instead of one of my more usual blogs (do I have a usual blog?), I decided to go on Google Maps and see if I could find every place I’ve ever lived (not including college dorms or anyplace I/we stayed less than 6 months). A few places are in “gated communities,” which Google must not have had permission to drive through. In Guilford, they just didn’t drive up our cul-de-sac. In those instances, I either included a photo of the community entrance or an aerial shot.

NORTH MASSAPEQUA, NY.
BROOKLYN, NY.

One really fun discovery: I had been under the impression that the house we lived in when I was born had been torn down long ago. It was built in 1901 (and, yes, it was already a really old house when I was born!). But there it is on Google maps— still standing. It’s the first in the series.

The University Years

BROCKPORT, NY.
BROCKPORT, NY.  (APPROPRIATELY, AT THE END OF HIGH STREET.)

A Place of My Own

BROOKLYN, NY.
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS.
BOSTON.

The San Geraldo Years

BOSTON.
MARINA DEL REY, CALIFORNIA.
GEORGETOWN, WASHINGTON, DC.
NEW HAVEN, CONNECTICUT.
GUILFORD, CONNECTICUT.
SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA.
SAN DIEGO.
SAN FRANCISCO.
PALM SPRINGS.
SANTA BARBARA.
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA.
LAS VEGAS.
SEVILLA, SPAIN.
AND NOW… LOS BOLICHES, FUENGIROLA, MÁLAGA.
(AND, I DON’T KNOW ABOUT YOU, BUT I’M EXHAUSTED!)
DALE AND I, VAN SICLEN AVENUE, 1956.

Author: Moving with Mitchell

From Brooklyn, New York; to North Massapequa; back to Brooklyn; Brockport, New York; back to Brooklyn... To Boston, Massachusetts, where I met Jerry... To Marina del Rey, California; Washington, DC; New Haven and Guilford, Connecticut; San Diego, San Francisco, Palm Springs, and Santa Barbara, California; Las Vegas, Nevada; Irvine, California; Sevilla, Spain. And Fuengirola, Málaga..

38 thoughts on “Google Home”

  1. It´s a great way to post when you have nothing to write about. Hope you have a good day when it´s Dale's Day. She watching over you, even after all these years.

  2. Must be tiring and exhilarating at the same time Mitch. A lot of places that reflect a lot of life well-lived. I am sure your sister Dale would have approved. It may be 32 years since her passing but it is obvious it seems like yesterday to you……cherish those wonderful memories/times you had with her.
    And look at that cute photo of you two!! Rolled up cuffs and all!

  3. This happens, from out of the blue someone you've loved deeply who has passed becomes ever present. Perhaps this is a good thing Mitch, perhaps you need to remember her this time, perhaps this is so very good for your soul.
    I know looking at your homes might tire you, but I am so intrigued. Thanks!
    Ron

  4. Oooh, other people are so good at putting my thoughts into words! Thanks Peter, Jim, and Sophie… all my thoughts, too.

    I thoroughly enjoyed seeing all of these places you've lived, Mitchell. And I never tire of seeing those photos of you with your sister 🙂

  5. Those photographs equal a lot of moving boxes!
    I like those bow-fronted apartments in Boston. One of them seem to share balconies with the next apartment building!
    Kirk

    PS
    It is only eight moves for me.

  6. I recognize one of those. I used to walk by it on my way to and from work every day. I actually think you lived there then, too. We were neighbors!

    1. Walt the Fourth:
      I wondered if that would be familiar to you. You would have passed the private drive (which was an extension of Burnside) when you walked on Bosworth. Yes, we were the first owners in December 1998. It was a fun house and a great location… and an easy walk to Tyger's Café for breakfast (and BART for work).

  7. Fabulous! Really must try this myself sometime. Can't help but notice that the sun is shining in very neasrly all of them – or maybe that's a proviso before Google takes the shot.

    And 'Graceland' – one of the soundtrack albums to my life! But one I rarely play for fear of choking up and wishing I was 30 years younger.

    1. Raybeard:
      Wow. I feel like I'm getting to know you so well. As I saved the images from Google, I thought, "Well, Raybeard will have something to say about all the sunshine." (But I also figured the Google camera wouldn't be out on dark and dreary days. So, even England looks sunny on Google Maps.)

      Amazingly, the Graceland album doesn't make me choke up but the lyrics do suck me in. I think the energy of Ladysmith Black Mambazo helps.

  8. Phew, I'm knackered! All that packing and un-packing. I thought I had moved about a bit. I'm going to have to try this, you may have started a new trend 🙂

    It's wonderful how you hang onto your memories of Dale. You looked so sweet together, inseparable. Keep smiling Mitch. She would want you to and is still right by your side.

    Much Love
    Di
    xoxo

    1. Di:
      Thanks so much. You're right about Dale (and about us together). I used to hide behind her when I was little. She was my protector!

      Finding the places on Google Maps really is fun… and especially discovering that the first place is still standing!

  9. My, but you've lived in some interesting places. I think this would be a great thing to do, posting pictures of all the places you've lived, but I never bothered taking any, not even the first home we ever purchased.

  10. 'Mitch, re 'Graceland': It's the period being evoked that pulls the strings rather than the tracks themselves – though, of course, they are high quality as well. Everyone has their own special 'triggers', bringing up memories of times lived through – but I imagine you've long ago discovered that for yourself.

  11. My, you have moved around a bit, and lived in some fairly exotic looking places!
    It's an interesting exercise – but moving house is so exhausting.

    1. Bob:
      So do I. My last place (before San Geraldo) was the totally renovated top floor of that huge brownstone. Then I moved into his elegant railroad flat on Beacon Hill (to the right was where Henry James lived in later years). It's an incredible city.

  12. What a thought-provoking post! I loved looking at the photos of your homes over the years, the architecture is so completely unlike anything on this side of the world. Like others I am particularly intrigued by the Boston buildings. You sent me off to Google to do the same exercise and I was interested to see that the house I was born in is still there, now completely unrecognisable with a second story built on.

    I do love the photo of you and Dale, so charming. Ah, the sweetness and innocence of childhood…

    1. Judith:
      Old Boston looks very different from most other cities in the USA. I loved it there. (And it's where San Geraldo and I met.) And San Diego coastline looks very much like the Mediterranean. So many different "typical" looks around the United States. I could spend hours on Google Maps (and I do).

  13. Actually the same with me, Mitch – the 1960s were THE evocative decade, more than any other. I remember in particular one golden Summer afternoon in 1967 when I'd be out with friends to walk along the Roman-constructed Hadrian's Wall (about 50 miles north of where I lived at the time), and returning home to hear the news that Beatles' manager Brian Epstein had died. (Thought then to have been suicide, now seen more likely to have been a tragic accident.) That whole era, Sgt Pepper, flower-power and the like, remains etched more indelibly than anything else in my life. It's funny because while it's happening one doesn't realise that decades later one will hold particular memories like these as the most preciously bitter-sweet ones ever experienced.

Share your thoughts and experiences. It's always nice to know I'm not alone.