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Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Astroworld

Yesterday I was looking at Google Maps, one of the coolest toys ever, and I noticed that they still have aerial shots of Astroworld. I drive by where Astroworld once stood twice a week, and I assure you, it is nothing but an empty lot now. So, seeing it as I remember it brought back a barrage of memories. And for all the problems with Astroworld (heat, crowds, crime, etc…) I could only summon fond feelings for it. Those memories helped me remember what it was like to be a teenager; a skinny, shy little kid desperately trying to find some identity, trying to stay afloat amidst the hormones and mounting responsibilities of adulthood that had just appeared on the horizon, but seemed so very far away. I saw all the rides that I will miss. I remember standing in their lines with some of my best friends. I remember going to my first concert there. I remember riding the same ride repeatedly because no one else was around. I remember walking those paths with that special girl. Certain smells still remind me of those days. All that is left are memories; good ones.

These memories help me to understand something about the current crop of teenagers. Though their situations differ from what I dealt with as a teenager, I think the underlying issues have remained the same, they only manifest as something else now. Deep down I was scared, though you couldn’t have gotten me to admit it. I was looking for acceptance. I wanted to be defined, but by others, rather than by my own exploits. I wanted to stand on my own, but was afraid to do so. I wanted connections, male and female, young and old. And I wanted to have a good time without adults getting in my business. I didn’t have anyone that I could really look up to at that age. That has been the story of most of my life. As the oldest child I had to forge my own path through unexplored territory. Luckily I had my parents, my friends, and my God to guide me. Maybe I can help guide some of today’s teenagers the way I needed to be guided when I was their age. Though I am not one of them, I have been where they are now, and it’s scary.

2 Comments:

Blogger Rachel said...

I too have very fond memories of Astroworld. We had season tickets for a couple of years when I was in high school. I think I might have watched my first concert there as well. It is strange how close we all lived to each other and experieced the same types of things.

10/20/2006 1:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Very interesting. I wonder if you could somehow email yourself into Google Map's Astroworld Ghost-town? Hmmm. Perhaps I've said too much!

10/20/2006 9:49 PM  

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