Rememering Oakwood: Memoir Mondays August 11, 2008

Oakwood Cottages, Briggs Highway, Greenfield Park, NY. My grandfather owned the place and every summer we packed the car and traveled just 10 miles from our large home in Ellenville, to move into a tiny bungalow. For my brothers and me it was exciting. We had a new canvas to paint adventures. We had friends from the Bronx, we went to camp during the week and swam in the colony pool every day. We learned how to play mah jong, we walked up and down our local country road to Newman’s for candy after dinner. We ran to meet the bakery trucks, the pickle man’s black Buick that housed his array of pickled delicacies: pickles of course: sour, half sour, green, pickled herring, lox. I wanted it all and we always got samples. I just had to stand in front of his laden trunk and breathe it all in and I was in pickle heaven.

Every so often we were treated to a truck that carried an amusement park ride, Rocky’s Whip, imagine. We didn’t need Disneyworld!

But somehow, even with everything the colony offered, when the weather began to turn in the second week of August I began to yearn for my bedroom, our street, everything I’d left behind. And I stood with my mom who never enjoyed our summers in the tiny bungalow, thrown to her in-laws. I was with her as we demanded we get home asap, to prepare for school in September.

When my aunt and her daughter were visiting recently, they found their way to Briggs Highway and snapped the photos of Oakwood but my Oakwood Cottages is layered

It’s not Oakwood anymore and hasn’t been for many years. When my grandfather died the colony was sold to the family across the street and I was already finished with Oakwood Cottages

The layers of summers live beyond place and I have lots of stories to remember and share.

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Categories: childhood | Tags: | 5 Comments

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5 thoughts on “Rememering Oakwood: Memoir Mondays August 11, 2008

  1. “”We had a new canvas to paint adventures. “”

    Love this description.

    “”And I stood with my mom who never enjoyed our summers in the tiny bungalow, thrown to her in-laws.””

    Love the phrase, “thrown to her in-laws”. I can relate!

    There is a sadness about not being able to go back to that time in childhood.
    At least that’s how I was feeling while “memoiring” today.
    ~jane

  2. Interesting Jane. I have such rich memories of this place and just knowing that my aunt returned there, even before I saw the photos, took me right back. I actually have and used a great photo of my dad working there. I need to get that photo back and write with it again.
    Thanks for pointing out some lines for me.
    Bonnie

  3. Extraordinary memories of the “Borchst Belt!” My mom has shared many fabulous memories of her time in the Catskills with me, which helped me to truly connect with your writing.

  4. NICCI

    WAS YOUR GRANDFATHERS NAME-META……I USE TO DO BUSINESS WITH HIM AND I WONDERING IF HE IS PASSED OR NOT-WHAT A GREAT MAN HE WAS TO ME.

  5. Sorry, no Aaron Kaplan
    BK

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