It's been 15 yrs. The last time I stepped foot in my hometown was for my paternal grandfather's funeral. I would have moved heaven and earth to have been there, which is sort of an odd thing to say for a person I was able to see very few times growing up, certainly not enough times over the years. It's only taken my mom about 8 yrs to guilt me into it. I don't guilt easily, obviously. LOL It wouldn't have worked this time except she used the pretext of legal issues I need to help her with. I of course don't buy it because coming on a weekend is just fine and dandy and banks and lawyers don't work on sat generally. I suppose that makes me a bad daughter. Oh, well. The people I cared for in that city are all gone now, except my mom. My bros.....while I don't hate them, I could probably live the rest of my life without seeing them and it not bother me. Same for my sisters (but they live out of state now too). Once I got tired of the one-sided relationship effort (all mine) I gave up years ago and just went on with my own life. Now they are older, they seem to want to be close. Can't say it does much for me at this point. I'm sort of like ehh, you make the effort now and we'll see where it goes. Shoot, the city in a huge way isn't even the same city I grew up in. The city counsel have destroyed it over the years. Once we get into city limits I'll have to stick to one street because at least that one via friends who still live there I know they haven't messed with it and it will take me nearly to my mom's house, which I have to find via an aunt's house (because aunt has ALWAYS lived in that house). I knew very few street names growing up. I navigate mainly via landmarks (I also never get lost).....but those land marks are nearly all gone now. Sadly the city has been in the death throes that had started when husband and I moved here (back to his hometown of Dayton) it's only gotten worse over time. The officials are only making it worse driving more people away while trying to entice a more upper income population which is comical (and will utterly fail) when the city has nothing to offer them except an extremely high unemployment rate, extreme crime and murder rate ect. Over the past year I've been collecting photos of the city I remember as well as how it was even before then. It's a very good thing I started to do that as those things are all gone. I just found out they're gutting my HS, but I guess I should be stunned they're at least not going to tear this one down. My mom couldn't / can't understand that it makes me grieve when I come home and it's not the city I recall in my mind, when it doesn't even somewhat resemble that city. It's like I'm coming to a foreign place, certainly not coming "home" again. It makes me sad and depressed. At my grandfather's funeral I told husband I'd never go back again until Mom's funeral. (I'm trying to get her to move over here so I can avoid it then) Nichole and I are leaving before dawn on Sat morning and taking every rural highway known to man to get there. Neither she nor I will drive an interstate (especially through a major city). It's an 8 hr trip. (gawd I hate that trip) Timing is everything I suppose. Saturday is Mom's birthday. But events just happened to play out that way and we're taking advantage of the opportunity while it's there. School starts monday. The trip with Nichole will be full of laughs. But I'm dreading it, I don't want to go "home" again. I will take her to see my maternal grandmother's grave and my cousin Darin's grave as I'd like to see them myself, most likely my aunt Janet's grave as she'll be next to Darin. I'll be spending the time I'm there working hard to convince Mom to move here. Probably won't work, but I'll try. She is having more and more memory issues and it's triggering the paranoia making it rear it's ugly head. I'll also try to take advantage of the short time I'll be there to see some of the places that held good memories that they are planning to tear down within this year. Never knew a city could be "raped" until I saw what they did to this one. Raped and gutted, left a hallow shell. What percentage of the population remains either can't move or won't move hoping that some miracle comes along and wipes out the powers that be and stops the madness We leave sat morning and head home sunday afternoon/evening. Wish I could say I was excited about it. But then I'd be lying.