Smell and Memory

smellingflowers

Yesterday I was brought back to a memory of being ten years old and I had just moved from a concrete urban environment that smelled like bus exhaust to a verdant suburb that smelled like fresh, cut grass. On Saturday mornings, all the men were out mowing their new suburban lawns. Now I closed my eyes and I was ten years old again and playing with my friends in the yard.

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An Easy Way to Do Good in Your Neighborhood

cards

Years ago, when I lived on a block with very new mothers, some of us decided to form a neighborhood bridge group. We were all terrible card players, but that really wasn’t the point. Meeting once a month was a way to get together, to talk about families, schools, neighborhood stuff. Some of us were friends outside of the bridge group, but not all of us were.

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In Praise of Sidewalks

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When my husband and I moved into a new house last year, the neighbors were welcoming. Our house is a traditional brick ranch on a winding street with big trees and lovely landscaping. Now the star magnolia tree in my front yard is blooming and the quaking aspen trees are just beginning to bud.

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May Day Baskets

may

May 1st is a holiday that children celebrate here in the Midwest with the sweetest custom: they make home-made baskets, fill them with flowers and candy and deliver the baskets to neighbors. The gift is anonymous. It’s also the only time a child has parental permission to ring a doorbell and then run like the wind.

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