Simpler Times - Main Street Neighborhoods

By
Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty TN R.E. License 292369
Speaking of simpler times, on my children's recent return trip to their old neighborhood in Syracuse, NY, they visited the house they grew up in.  The house was close to 100 years old at the time and they have fond memories of the house, the neighborhood and their childhood in general.  I am writing about this thinking about that is the recreating of these types neighborhoods and the desire to return to a simpler time that keep some of them selling so well.


What was it about this neighborhood that we lost when we moved to suburbia?  Front porches that we sat out on the warm summer and cooler autumn evenings.  Corner grocers that we walked to to get the gallon of milk that still came in returnable glass bottles. Did it taste better out of glass or is that just my memory playing tricks on me.  The theater was two blocks away, with just one movie and one screen (usually last month's hit).  The schools and parks were all walking distance, less than 1/4 mile.  Baseball, softball, football, tennis courts and community pools even a public par 3 golf course ($3.00) green fees, all within walking distance from our neighborhood.



Why do I emphasize walking distance, and side walks too?  Because we had only one car.  During those summer days, when I drove to work the only way my family could get to the park, the store, the movie theater, the ice cream shop, the school yards or parks was to walk, and they did.


We met our neighbors that way.  We knew their kids, they knew ours.  All these children knew what they couldn't get away with without risk of being seen by the watchful eyes of a concerned (nosy) neighbor.  We played together, worshiped together, went to school, partied, and even mourned together.



It is my belief that not having an automatic garage door opener helped neighbors to greet each other.  Getting out to open the door when coming and going and actually stopping to chat (not on facebook either) developed friendships. 


It is nice to see these type of neighborhoods making a comeback, even if they are in suburbia.  Front porches, restaurants, theaters, and neighborhood shops all within walking distance.  I am not sure if families will ever give up their second car, but my families best memories are of those days of walking everywhere they needed to be without the radio blaring or the individual DVD players in the back seat of the second or third car.



Pictured above are two of my daughters returning to the "old house" 25 years after the photo below was taken.


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Rainmaker
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Li Read
Sea to Sky Premier Properties (Salt Spring) - Salt Spring Island, BC
Caring expertise...knowledge for you!

I loved your memory "trip" -- that kind of neighbourhood closeness is what many of us try to reproduce.

Sep 27, 2009 10:18 AM #1
Rainmaker
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Franklin & Brentwood, TN Homes Mike Nastri
Keller Williams Realty - Franklin, TN
It matters to us as much as it matters to you.

Thanks Li, my kids bring me down memory lane and I enjoy the trip.

Sep 27, 2009 10:22 AM #2
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Mike, your trip down memory lane brought back memories for me too. Cool post...

Helping you live your American dream...

Sep 27, 2009 08:46 PM #3
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Vanessa Stalets
RE/MAX Elite - Brentwood, TN
REALTOR, Brentwood TN Homes, Real Estate

I love this post, the "old" neighborhoods really did invite friendships didn't they? There are some out there now, the modern version yes, but there all the same.

Sep 30, 2009 11:41 PM #4
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Rainmaker
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