We moved out of Nashville, when I was eight years old, and lived in Gilbertsville, Kentucky, for a few months. Then, we moved a few miles down the road to Calvert City. I ended up going to three different elementary schools during the 4th Grade.
After the 5th Grade, we moved once again. This time we ended up in Savannah, Tennessee. My mom still lives there, and so did my dad until he passed way in 2010.
The last time I visited while my dad was alive, he said something along the lines of, "I think all of that moving around turned out pretty well."
I had never actually talked to Daddy about that, before. Ours was not a family where the kids were asked what they thought about moving. We were just told that we were going, and we went. So, I took the opportunity to tell my dad how I really felt about that aspect of my life.
I told him that I wish that we had never left Nashville. I think that all of that moving, and leaving people behind, stunted my ability to form lasting relationships with people. You have to keep in mind that, in the 1960s and 70s, there was no email, or Facebook. Long distance calls were expensive, and forbidden to 10 year olds, generally.
When you moved away, you were actually gone. And the people you left behind were out of your life. Now, I have a hard time maintaining any sort of long-distance relationships.
Silver lining? The bicycle became an important part of my life in Calvert City. I was allowed to go out, on my own, for the first time in my life and I took great advantage of that. My parents would actually ask me the best way to get to places in town, because I had learned the shortcuts on my bike.
In Savannah, that freedom continued on, and I learned my way around town well before the old folks did. In Nashville (Donelson, actually, a suburb), we were restricted on wehere we could go. And, even as we grew older, we would have been limited to our own neighborhood, hemmed in by I-40 on one side, and multi-lane urban streets on the other.
I wish I had thought of that while I was talking to Daddy. As it was, I only talked about the negatives. And, too much of our relationship focused on the negatives.