The places of our youth are subject to the same forces of change as everything and everywhere else; nothing truly remains the same. I had the opportunity today to visit the dot on the map that held the first school I attended: Winameg, Ohio and its Pike Township School. The school, I’d heard, was to have been rehabbed into apartments. That never happened. So the place where Mrs. Miller taught First Grade and Mrs. Secrest (my favorite) taught second; the school that hosted the bookmobile and a regular visit from the Scholastic Books salesman; that place is derelict. The windows are sad and dark, paint on the doors is faded and streaking, and the once well-manicured landscape is running wild. The playground is gone. Winameg itself was never much more than the school, a church, a few houses, and a cozy general store. Years ago the store burned down. You can’t go home again, and you can’t go back to school as places and people change. Winameg, however, will remain fixed in my memory as a happy place of my childhood.
You can’t go home again, or back to school