Recently my therapist has wanted me to start writing stories based on my childhood. Yes, exactly, how sterotypical! But really I think he has a point and certainly some of my baggage, I mean, childhood, might even be interesting material.
So I pondered where to start. And, like the magic 8-ball sometimes says “all signs point to…” — uhh a place in the Poconos called Alvin’s Cabins. I provide the link because I know you’re all thinking that name is total BS, but I am not making this up! It’s where I spent two full weeks of my young adolescence along with my two sisters and my parents.
Now for those of you around the world, the Poconos, like the more famous Catskills, is a wannabe resort area in the mid-Atlantic. Wanna be because it hasn’t got a prayer against the competition of the stately Adirondacks and the haute-monde Hamptons. The Poconos is what you’d call locally famous – i.e. within maybe a 100 mile radius. The type of place where at the best establishment you might have found a pre-riches Anna Nicole Smith soaking in bubbles in a heart-shaped hot tub. Many of the hotels market themselves to honeymooners from Philadelphia and New York – sometimes naughty, but definitely with a downscale vibe.
Now, as I was doing my research on this – i.e. phoning my older sister and father to ask what they remembered of that now-shadowy two weeks, I also mentioned what I was doing to my dear sweet partner. That’s when he described for me one of his own childhood vacations – and this illustrates the difference in upbringing and backgrounds. For his memory was of being at a camp in the Sierra foothills, on his own, not even with his family (which I am sure was as embarrassing to him as everyone’s is when you are twelve), where the activities included things such as horseback riding, and being served meals by a resident chef. How delightful that would have been compared to schlepping in a small car for six hours, towed along with the entire embarassing family, on the way to Alvin’s Cabins where the activities consisted of tetherball, and TV!
No, I am NOT bitter!