Well I never know when the urge to drive through the old neighborhood strikes. I’m in SE Wisconsin quite often but am usually too overwhelmed by the TRAFFIC to think about anything but getting out of town. Holy gridlock Batman, what a freakin mess. No wonder my friends are so stressed out. You can’t even go to the grocery store without being attacked by vehicles moving way too fast. I’m not saying I’ve turned in to a really slow driver but I did get flipped off by some guy on a farm tractor as he passed me. Dam phone went off and scared the shit out of me, but that’s a different story. Anyway, I KNOW I’m not the competative driver who used to drive 40,000 to 50,000 miles a year selling packaging materials, but I didn’t think I would lose the ability to defend myself that quickly. It’s not like riding a bike. It’s like strapping a rocket to your ass and hoping some kid in a “beamer” doesn’t run you off Calhoun Road and over the curb. OK, so I’m sorry. I was looking at what used to be fields and a creek where I caught crayfish. And I’m sorry my car isn’t up to neighborhood status, but I couldn’t believe the houses in what used to be an apple orchard and swampy woods adjacent to the great baseball field. Really lady, I wasn’t casing your house, I just couldn’t believe one was sitting there. The tree where I smoked my first cigarrette was still there, a topless yard ornament. I saw my old house on Robinwood and the houses of so many friends from childhood through high school. I didn’t chase the memories all the way to the house in Elm Grove, but I did visit Carraige Hill and descended the big hill into the villiage of Brookfield. Got a small headache as I passed the old Side Tarcks and what used to be Werner’s, then Buddies. Heck, I still kinda remember the guy who had it BEFORE Werner, but that was 36 years ago. Must be remnants of many hang overs, good times, bad times, fun and friendships that were formed there. How about Frisbee and 4 AM because we were too drunk to drive and let Werner lock our keys in the bar. Plenty of light and we figured we’d be in better shape when the cleaning lady came at 7AM. Of course an alternate plan happened when someone from the nrighborhood stopped on their way home and we ended up on a 2-dayer.
Well I made it without any scars. My trip through Brookfield Monday that is. The previous 40 years there left plenty. I still can’t believe the amount of concrete, west of Brookfield Road, a 4 lane Calhoun Road and the pace everywhere, let alone Bluemound Road. I was lucky to be able to spend a day Muskie fishing on the bay of Green Bay on Tuesday. We didn’t catch anything but the chance to be with my friend Ron, who owns Sunset Bar & Grill on Riley’s Point south of Sturgeon Bay, was great. So was the sun on my face, the quiet calm of the day and fantastic sunset. I am fortunate to be able to refresh myself while working, (we were filming for a project for Off Shore Tackle). If I was still in Brookfield, I would have had to dodge 4,000 cars just to get out of the neighborhood. I miss everything Brookfield meant to me and SO many people I would love to see every day if possible, but I’ll trade it for the sunset over the bay this day.