85.-RoanokeIt had been years since I had last been on Roanoke Avenue, and I don’t have a good explanation of why I’m here now. If you let your memories run, the mind has a way of moving the body without you realizing it.

My parents are older, and it’s time to sell the house. That’s what brought me back into my hometown. A day turned into a week after we started to digging through the mementos a lifetime builds up. I was surprised to see so much of my stuff; I didn’t remember leaving anything of value. Time, though, has a way of upping the value of things as they become the only physical evidence linking you to times and places forgotten and far removed.

It was the yearbook that brought back the most memories, or the ones I wanted to relive most. Then I saw her picture, and my mind was off to the nostalgic races.

Dena Chapman. First real girlfriend. First real… well, suffice to say there were a lot of firsts.

Today’s my last day in town, so I started driving, without any real destination. I found myself here, on Roanoke, looking at Dena’s house. I see the driveway I remember from my youth, and I see the bedroom window — third on the left — where a lot of my history was made.

And for a moment — for a split second — I have the feeling of being able to push through the thin gauze separating “now” and “then.”