They don't even call it Bradford anymore. It's name has been officially changed to "Haverhill". It was always a part of Haverhill. Separate but the same. We were the kids on the other side of the river, the other side of the tracks. We were "South" Main, to their Main Street.
Times have changed, haven't they? No more Bradford. No more memories (or so it seems) for the kids of today like we had. (Today they sit inside glued to their iPad.)
Staying outside till the streetlights came on. Then we knew we'd better get our butts home. We were taught to take care of others. Always shoveling the next door neighbor (who lived to be 102) before we did our own walk. Never asking for anything in return.
It was back before seatbelts when we all piled into the back of the McKay's stationwagon for a summer evening drive to the ice cream stand. It was cops and robbers back when the good guys always won.
It was the place of your first crush, your first kiss (okay, maybe not mine... I was a late bloomer) It was where everyone sat at the table to eat dinner together. It was where you walked everywhere. It's where you played in the mud, got dirty, and sometimes even locked out of the house to "get some fresh air" (so your mother could watch her soaps on the one tv you had) when fresh air, was what we always got.
It's the place where lasting friendships were created and where memories were made.
It's where we came from.
There is a garden in every childhood, an enchanted place where colors are brighter, the air softer, and the morning more fragrant than ever again. ~Elizabeth Lawrence