6000 Miles West

It’s almost time to head home. Well, not really home. This is where I have lived for the last 18 years, but it still doesn’t feel like home. 

I’m absolutely at home there. Yolande has done beautiful things inside our flat. Beautiful. It cozy. It’s warm in the winter and cool in the summer. It has a great kitchen. I love returning there after one of my adventures, but it’s not my home. 

This is my home. 

My grandfather, John David Derstine, was the first Postmaster of the town. 

That’s Main Street! Just down the road is the Intersection or Main St and Butler Avenue. The “downtown” or center of town. That was my corner. I was appointed Captain of the Safety Patrol in 1960. I had the most important post! It went straight to my head. 

This is what Forrest Park looked like in the 1950s. I went there EVERY DAY! Those swan boats were imported from Europe just for our park. Parks like this were very big in America back then. No internet. 

I still walk back into those woods and explore the ruins of the park. There were carnival type rides, a band shell, a baseball field, picnic tables, a huge swimming pool, and a miniature train that circled the entire grounds.

(For more info: Wikipedia: Forest Park, Chalfont)

Chalfont was a great place to grow up. I was very lucky. 

Two branches of the Neshaminy Creek meet in Chalfont. It was the location of a large Leni Lenape Indian settlement. A very famous chief, Tamanend, is buried there. 

My mom used to take me to the creek to search for the grave when I was small. I still walk those streams in the summer, catching bluegills and bass. 

Love Chalfont.  It’s my real home. 

I have s whole bunch more Chalfont stories.  My friend Larry, who lives now on MY SLEDDING HILL, feels the same way I do about Chalfont and the Neshaminy. I’m going to ask him to do a guest entry on my blog. Maybe some of his impressions of what it was like raising his children with their feet in that creek… 😊

Think I’ll ask him. 


6 thoughts on “6000 Miles West

  1. Yes Doug ! Ditto that about Chalfont and the Neshaminy creek. We moved here in 1981 with the specific priority that the children and I have walking access to a healthy beautiful creek,so education about the natural world would continue. Now we are blessed with six grand kids, all local that are doing the same. We are creek stomping (with a light touch) almost every week together and ice skating when we can in the winter. A picture, a thousand words, I wish I knew how to paste a pic here of the children in the creek. We are currently learning about the plants animals and insects in and about the creek, and how to discern the conditions and water quality from that. Tristan Gooley ‘s book “How to Read Water” gives one incredible incite.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for that my friend. You are so the right person to have occupied my hill. In the 1950s my father often took his 3 boys down to fish just below your home. I caught my first Sunny there. 🙂


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