Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Watching the Passage of Time
It's a gray, foggy day, as the remnants of Ida finish their tour of the Tallahassee area. I get to work, look out my window, and see two large mechanical dinosaurs begin the destruction of another landmark of my history. This landmark is not terribly important in the grand scheme of things, but I have my attachments. They're tearing down the old Kmart building on Thomasville Road.
For those of you much younger than I, it was most recently an Albertson's grocery store, but all my memories are of the big red K. I remember my brothers and I saving our yard raking money to buy Stomper 4x4's and Dukes of Hazard model cars. The General Lee never quite looked like it did on TV, or the box cover for that matter, when I was done with it. When I was old enough to recognize that girls were not yucky, I bought my first cheesecake poster. I remember my brothers being mortified that I'd waste my $4 on a paper thing that hung on the wall, instead of another AA battery operated device of delight. This particular Kmart even had the auto service center. I'd sit outside with my Granddad and eat stale Kmart popcorn, while they installed a new set of tires on the Grand Torino or the El Camino.
My Granddad's house is gone now. It too fell victim to progress. When I would get sick in school, as a kid, my Mom would take me to Wendy's for lunch, and drop me off with my Grandparents, until she finished work. The day they tore down my Granddad's house was tough. I went to Wendy's for my dinner, and sat in his old yard and looked at all the rubble. The smell of 50+ years of his family life, the smell of holidays and family time, permeated the entire lot. I knew the smell would be gone the next day, so I sat in the yard, ate my burger, and enjoyed my memories.
I know the passage of time is irrefutable, and I look forward to the supposed Publix Greenwise that is taking over this real estate. But, it is still tough to watch the demolition of yet another of my childhood icons.