We just returned from Waco, Texas, the place I knew as home for so many years. I went by the house where I came of age, ran that same pavement I pounded so many times and caught up with one of my high school football coaches. I sweltered under that familiar Texas heat (in the 100’s). I saw old friends and, most importantly, our whole brood spent time with my mom and dad, sister, brother-in-law, my two delightful nieces – and my 91-year-old grandmother.

This is the kind of place that, you come to find, has become not only part of your memory but part of your being. You may leave a place, but a place like this never leaves you.

I see it with new eyes now. That theater on 25th street that was for so long merely an eyesore – now I wonder about the laughter those walls have heard, the back row make-out sessions those seats have endured, the stories those moth-eaten screens have offered. I wandered into neighborhoods I thought little of years ago. I think more of them now.

There’s that shopping center that offered the best arcade on our side of town, $10 for all-you-could-play video games. The arcade is long gone, but there’s still a snow cone stand on the edge of the parking lot.

Home may be where you find yourself, but the places that have made you send you off into the world with bits and pieces of home to take along. These places will always participate in whatever home means for us now.

8 Replies to “Waco”

  1. Our lives are big, aren't they, Winn? So much goes into them, so very blessed much…I betcha you could write some stories about the wonder of those days…I'd read 'em.

  2. as a P.S. to all Waco-lovers. While the Chicken Shack lives only in lore, Health Camp (which should of course be called not-Health Camp) is alive and kicking, though unlikely to help any of us stay alive and kicking…

  3. thanks, Ben. I have enjoyed your blog, you should pick it back up when your life calms down, say a decade or two.

  4. I'd love it if you wrote stories about your Waco memories! Waco is in my soul, too. Some things have changed, but a lot hasn't. La Fiesta is still doing well, too! I remember going to movies in the 25th Street Theater, btw. 🙂

  5. Winn- I understand so well what you mean. I went to that theatre too and my Aunt Doris owned Paul’s shoe shop just up the street. For me Waco is a God spot- a place of unqualified love in the 1960’s when we lived there wtih family for a few years. It was a golden time. I just returned from a visit and the theater and that whole area is so run down. It broke my heart.

    1. Paul’s Shoe Shop – I think I remember it. Glad we share good memories and good grace from this place.

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