The old saying you can never go home again is somewhat true. After being in the town I grew up in, and its surrounding area for the past several weeks, I realized  it’s not my home anymore, but a place I go to visit my family and friends.

Flint

Being born and raised in a little city outside of Flint, whenever anyone asked where you were from, you always stated Flint because people knew of it.

Michael Moore put Flint on the map with his film, Roger and Me in 1989, which brought attention to the closures of GM plants in the city.  The Documentary Film, Bigger Than Water, has also added to Flints problems.

The city of Flint, with all its trouble, is trying to come back. Like so many other cities and towns I have been to, downtown Flint is being renovated to draw the younger crowd to it.

Many of the auto factories Flint once had are no longer there, but Flint is still home to Kogels Meats which produce the best hot dogs ever!  I found out they will ship so when I am craving their Vienna’s I will send for them.

The Crim Festival of Races is still held in Flint each year.  This race brings many runners and tourists to the downtown area. , and is a great event.

With both the University of Michigan and Michigan State having campuses in downtown, more young people are going to the area.

They have renovated the Capitol Theater (a theater I went to as a child and teenager), the Farmers Market has moved from its former location to a location near both campuses and many new bars and restaurants have been added.

Like any city, Flint still has its problems in the surrounding areas of downtown, and many will only go through the area in the daytime.

My family always lived in the country per se, but even the areas I grew up in seem run down and unsafe.  I hate to be negative about a city that I thought was a great place to live, work and raise a family in, but it’s no longer that place to me.

Things I Experienced In Flint

One day my friends I was staying with, took me Downtown to see the renovations and go to the Farmer’s Market.  As we traveled to the area it was sad to see how much the area had changed in the past 14 years since I had left.  Once in Downtown I was happy to see the changes being made.

We visited the Farmers Market first and had lunch at the Beirut Restaurant which offered middle eastern food.  I had a beef and lamb gyro.  Sam, the owner, came out from behind the counter and spoke with us, which I thought was very nice.

I purchased a few things at the market then we went up stairs to the Market Brewery and had a beer.  From there we went down the street to the Table and Tap.

The Table and Tap is a very nice hip bar.  The young man at the bar who waited on us was great.  They offer food and craft beer.  He showed us an added feature of the bar which was a bookcase that when open, revealed a hidden speakeasy.

The day spent in Downtown Flint was very nice and fun.  I do hope the city comes back to the city it once was.

My Family and Friends

I still have some family and many friends in the area; however, they all live in smaller cities outside Flint. When I get with them, it’s like I never left. Many of them go to Florida for the winter and return to Michigan for the summer.

My stay became longer than I intended as I wanted to make sure I saw as many of my family and friends as possible. I was able to see my great-niece and nephew play baseball and spend time with mostly all my friends.

Also still living in the area are my late husband’s sisters who live in the area.  I had a great visit with them over dinner with them.

Changing Plans

I planned to leave Monday after lunch with my friends; however, my plans changed when I learned of the loss of my friend’s husband.  I decided to stay and attend the funeral.

When I do leave, I’m thinking of taking the Lake Michigna Express Ferry from Muskegon across Lake Michigan to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. The boat sounds like a fun trip so I hope it all works out and I can take Coco with me.

There are some restrictions when you bring your pet on-board the ferry, and I want to make sure Coco is not going to be traumatized on the 2 ½ hour boat ride.

According to the website, pets cannot come with you on deck. All dogs have to stay in the car with windows rolled up or in a kennel. There are questions I need answers to before taking the trip.

What I Discovered

While being back in Michigan, I realized it is not home anymore. It was a beautiful place to grow up and a great place to raise my kids; however, I could never come back and live here.

There are some beautiful places to visit in Michigan, especially up north, as we call it. Michigan has the Great Lakes, many inland lakes, fishing, golfing, skiing and many great festivals.

Michigan also offers some great fresh produce, cherries, peaches, and apples in the summer and fall. I’m not a fan of winter however you can capture its beauty, ski, snow mobile, ice fish and cut down your own Christmas tree if you like.

I discovered it doesn’t matter where you grew up, but how you live life where you live now.  Home really is where the heart is!

Have you moved away from the place you grew up and then went back to discovered it was no longer the place you call home? Have you found that home is where your heart is? Please leave a comment and let me know your thoughts on this. Cheers!