From 1984 until 1995, I lived south of Westminster, MD, off MD-27. I had many adventures playing with the neighbors and running around here. I will someday write a series of books about these years, and you will want to buy these books.
Since 1995, I have returned a few times, just to take a look around.
(6/22/10) After picking up one friend at BWI airport, and then hanging out with my childhood friend, Matthew Doughterty in Towson, we headed out to Westminster, my childhood town. We spent the night at the Boston Inn, and before I went to bed, I walked around downtown Westminster, to the tune of 5.5 miles. I walked down past my old middle school, West Middle, then up Main Street past the old firehouse (now stores) and post office. I weaved around quite a bit, just taking it all in. Some places were so familiar, and I found myself navigating through town with relative ease, even though I’d never driven there. The next morning we made some detours but ended up touring Westminster again. The first stop was the Westminster SDA church, where I attended church for 10 years, and school for about 4 weeks of 1st grade. Crest Lane built an addition, a gymnasium, and moved the playground. Most of the playground toys I remember were gone, except the merry-go-round. At Crest Lane, the older kids would push and I would ride, and I was very happy to see that it was still in service. When I was riding it, one half of it was blue and one was red, but now it’s all red, so it’s been repainted. Anyway, I was happy to ride it again. There were no bigger kids to push me though…
My childhood church:
Crest Lane SDA school (part of 1st grade):
After visiting Westminster SDA church and Crest Lane, we went to Bullocks for meat. I had not been in Bullocks in around 15 years, but I remembered the place as soon as we got there. I guess it smells like any other clean butcher shop, but I had childhood memories associated with that smell and looking around at the meat in the refrigerated cases. We drove over to my elementary school, Westminster Elementary. They updated their facilities to include newer playground toys instead of the wood ones that we used to play with. All of the portables (trailers used as classrooms) were gone. There was still the hill that we used as the edge of our ‘air mail’ field, a simple game where we kicked the ball back and forth and tried to catch it while it was in the air. Also visible are the WTTR AM towers. I used to listen to the Oriole games on that station, as we did not have cable and all of the home games were not televised outside of the cable network.
After visiting the elementary school, we traced my old bus route back along Stone Chapel Road and back to Route 27. From there, we headed back in towards town. We stopped at the driveway that goes under the railroad tracks (I always wondered what was back there), and into downtown. From there, we saw the Carroll County Public Library, Sherwood stack, and Westminster Post Office.
We left downtown Westminster and headed back towards the neighborhood and house where I grew up. When I lived there, 1984-1995, it was all open fields. Everyone planted trees. It’s all grown up now. Anyway, I drove up to my old house and met with the new owner, or rather the person who bought it from us in 1995. She was very nice and gave me a tour of the place. I snapped a few photos from the front yard, with her permission.
Our final stop on this tour was the stream just down Baker Road, and the farm by the stream. As a 12-13 year old, I used to walk down here with some of the other neighbors. Interestingly, the stream appears to flow the opposite direction than I remember. I remember something peaceful about hanging out at the stream and the barn behind us. I also remember the owners had a dog named James that was real friendly.
On Sunday, we headed up to just outside of Baltimore for a nice visit with my childhood neighbors Tim N., and Matt D. I saw them back in 2004, and before that it was 1999 and before that was when I moved away in 1995. After visiting with them, we rode over to Westminster to drive around in what was once my home town. I took a few photos of my old house as well as the Westminster SDA church:
My old neighborhood and home:
West Middle School (6th grade through most of 8th grade):
My childhood church: