A Home Away from Home

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Steel Field. A field, a park, a home. Thinking back to my earliest days of life, Steel Field will always be inscribed into my heart. Memories pour out of me in thinking about that place, anything from my first kiss to my first fist fight. Some might say I practically lived in that field, I have enough memories from Steel Field to last me a life time and a half. It was somewhere that over time eventually actually felt like a real home to me. The stories and moments I have from there are ones that I will always keep in my family tradition.
When anyone ever asked me about my childhood, I usually sum it up in about two words; Steel Field. When people are little, they all have their "first times", first steps, first words, first tee-ball game. My "first times" all occurred at this field. My first homerun, first touchdown, first basketball shot made, first goal in hockey, first summer camp, first broken bone, even my first time sledding. It was a place where I would go just to get away from everything and everyone, a place that become a part of my life; part of myself. It is a place that when I just look at it driving by I can physically picture all the different memories I had there from certain points in my life, anywhere from the age of one to sixteen. Memories from my first friends still linger in that place; it is a feeling that is indescribable, almost as if it's a mixture of sadness and appreciation at the same time.
A time that I will never forget from Steel Field came when I was about five years old. I was at my house on a regular Saturday afternoon, living the average life of a kid. My family and I had two turtles named Leo and Kate (named after THE infamous Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles), I always loved to take them out of their cage and let them walk around the backyard. On this very particular afternoon after taking them out of their cage, my brother came out screaming "ROCKET POWER IS ON!!!" which at the time was a show I would die for. So after hearing this, I immediately ran inside and became glued to the TV for hours. After watching the show, I looked out the window and saw my brother crying his eyes out next to my mom. I walked out to evaluate the scene and in utter shock and disbelief, the two turtles had run away. Who would have figured, two of the potentially slowest creatures on earth ran away. We ended up finding Leo later that day under our neighbor's tree, but Kate remained on the loose. So what does that have to do with Steel Field? Haha, well about two and a half years later, after numerous mourning sessions in accepting that our turtle ran away, we received a sudden knock on our front door. It was neighborhood's notorious bully, Big Benny, and saying he found Kate. In my head I thought he was pulling some kind of sick joke. So he brought me down to Steel Field in the very, very back of the park near the woods (what Benny was doing back there I still do not know), and under an old, moldy abandoned bleacher, I see a hard yellowish shell. I yanked and yanked at this shell till it tore its' roots from the ground. All the sudden, I saw a little, tiny head pop out. IT WAS KATE, AFTER TWO YEARS OF AGONY AND MYSTERY AND TORMENT FROM MY FAMILY, we found Kate in the back of Steel Field. Who would have figured? How the hell did a turtle walk all the way down the street crossing roads and curbs, and make it all the way down in the back of Steel Field? That question has been lingering in my family ever since.
As dumb and irrelevant that story is the thing behind it is that Steel Field holds memories in my heart that can never be taken from me. Things that most kids experience in their first homes as children, I experienced at Steel Field. It is a place that will be part of me my entire life, and no matter where I end up living one day, never will I forget such a place. I have enough memories there to fill up my entire lifetime, I love that place and always will. I learned that you can find the most joy in the most simplest of places, and that is something that most people have the hardest time doing.





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