RESPONSE TO GROWING UP AMERICAN:  LAURELTON IN THE 1930ís

October 6, 2008

Hi Skip:

"Growing Up American" was such a wonderful story about Laurelton.   I want to thank Annette for such an in- depth description of life back then.

I too, was born in The Bronx and moved to Laurelton in 1938 at the age ripe old age of 1. My childhood memories coincided exactly with Annette's memories.  She is a brilliant writer. Thank you Annette. 

About 3 months ago I visited Laurelton with my husband, Marty..  My address was 137-41-232 Street in a "Spanish Stucco" home and my phone number was LA 8- 8499.. "My" stucco house is more beautiful than ever. It is now dressed up in light beige aluminum siding with a stone face and a large picture window in "my" living room facing "my" gutter where we played "Running Bases" and "I Declare War".

Laurelton is still gorgeous (except for Merrick ROAD or as they now call it Merrick Blvd..) It looks like a street out of The Twilight Zone.   The tree- lined streets of "my" town looked like they belonged on a beautiful picture postcard.  

We stopped our car on 232 street and I got out. As I was taking in the sights around "my" house and "my" alley- way, a lady was walking down 232 street right in my direction. She watched me taking pictures of "my" house. I had the biggest smile on my face as she started to pass me. She smiled back. I greeted her ( with my shoulders back and head up so high that it felt like I touched the sky) and I pointed to "my" house. She seemed so friendly that I couldn't help but tell her all about "my block" and "my neighbors" and the house in which I was brought up .. I had a captive audience and I was on stage telling her all about my childhood growing up on that very block. She was very interested and added comments about how neighbors have fixed up these houses both inside and outside. We exchanged smiles and I'm sure that her family's dinner table chatter that night was much about our conversation that sunny afternoon.  She told us to take a ride down 226th street as it was an award-winning street. She was right... Those houses looked as if they were right out of HOUSE BEAUTIFUL.

They say that "you can't go home." I gotta tell all of you that if you take a trip back to Laurelton, you will be able to "go home" and kvell.

It would be fun to hear from a fellow "Laureltonite" so that we can share some more memories.

Fondly,

Rochelle (Rauch) Landis     Email Address:  sunnyeisen@aol.com 


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