The joy of a sentimental journey back to old-time Phoenix
I'll admit it, I love the feeling of a sentimental journey. Most people love to go back and trace their footprints, looking back fondly on days gone by. Yes, I know some people scoff at that, but who needs them? It's a delicious feeling, and a very personal one.
I collect old photos of Phoenix, and I'm usually interested in learning more about the history of Phoenix before I got there, which was 1977. But lately I've been indulging in some sentimental journeys, and sharing them on this blog. Mostly I've written about cars I've loved, and lost, and the good golf shots I've made (which weren't many!). If you're scoffing at that, I'm sorry that you feel that way. If you ask "what was I thinking?" I can just reply that I was young, and to me all is forgiven.
Sentimental journeys are important to good mental health. Looking back at your life and seeing nothing but the mistakes you've made (and hopefully you've made a lot!) can have you not wanting to get out of bed in the morning. As a person who struggles to do his best every day, I try to look to my own personal past and focus on what went right, what I learned, and how I can apply it today.
Whether they were simpler times or not, at least I understand them better than I understand now. I'm working furiously to stay caught up with the latest technology, the latest news, today. When I look back to the old days I can "wrap my arms around it", and understand, because I was there, and also because I've had many years to try to understand it.
Many of the places that I knew in Phoenix are gone, but that doesn't mean that they've disappeared in my heart, and in my mind. I've been known to stand in front of a brand-new building, just to put my feet in the same place they were when I was 19. I'm not wishing that the old places would return, or that I could be 19 again, I just like the feeling that being there conjures up. If you've ever done this, you understand. If not, give it a try.
Sentimental journeys can make ordinary places extraordinary. And in a world that I often have found dull and dreary, I love to be able to conjure up some magic, just for myself. I especially like to walk around the ASU campus and recall the time I wiped out on my bicycle, or the way I felt sitting there on the bench in front of the art building waiting for the little red-haired girl to come out so that we could go to the Chuckbox.
I'm visiting these places right now in my imagination, and hopefully I'll be able to visit them again IRL (In Real Life). My wonky right ankle makes going to these places painful, but for the joy of a sentimental it's worth it.
Thank you for taking a sentimental journey with me!
Image at the top of this post: With my brand new Saturn SC in 1992, Phoenix, Arizona at my girlfriend's house on 7th Street, just south of Northern Avenue, in Phoenix. Ah, those were the days!
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Posted by Brad Hall