POTD: So Long the American Dream

So Long the American Dream
Wichita, Kansas
2010

As soon as I post this I’m headed back home to Montana after spending two weeks in Wichita, first attending my father’s funeral and then attending to his affairs and moving my mother into a very nice duplex in the independent living section of a retirement community. Yesterday the last of the household goods she did not move were hauled away from the old house and I put it on the market. There is nothing special about this house, or this story for that matter; it’s repeated every day, everywhere. Except that for me it is special, as your own (perhaps equally unremarkable story) is to you. My parents lived in this house just a few weeks short of 50 years, and I, along with my two brothers and sister, spent most of my youth there. Short of Leave it to Beaver or Father Knows Best, life in this house in the 60s was as quintessentially American as you could get at the time. Today, for better or for worse, the American Dream has moved on I think (or at least fractured into many different dreams compared to 50 years ago). And my family has moved on too, for better or for worse.

3 thoughts on “POTD: So Long the American Dream”

  1. For what it’s worth, I’m raising my kids in the California-version of this house (stucco walls, but even closer to our neighbors on either side). When the time comes for me (or my husband), I hope our kids will be there too.

    I can only find unremarkable words at this time, but I’ll write them anyway, and trust you know the sentiment is genuine: thinking of you, Larry.

    -Janette

    1. Thanks Janette. From what little I know, it does seem that a modernized but still traditional American Dream is alive and well at your house in California. Anyway, I hope my comments came across more as a Kurt Vonnegat “so it goes” sentiment than something too maudlin. Time marches on and I am (reasonably) at peace with experiencing all the changes the aging process is meant to bring us. Oh, and maybe your kids can practice by taking care of me when I get old–that way they’ll have it down pat when it comes your turn. 🙂

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