When I was little, think kindergarten through the first half of second grade, my family lived in Cloquet, Minnesota. Cloquet is a small town located just outside Duluth and thanks to the universe aligning, I had some free time between TBEX tours and was able to explore one of my many old hometowns.
When I was little, I always thought Cloquet was a cool name and I thought it was even cooler that I could spell it. We didn’t actually live in town, we live about 20 minutes out up a big hill, around a curve, and down a side road on a lake called Big Lake.
Our little community was quiet. After school, Mom would take my sister and me, with our big black Newfoundland for a walk down the road. One day, Jenny (the Newfoundland) came barreling out of the woods much to the terror of the other woman biking. She thought that Jenny was a bear.
I suppose it could be possible to mistake a dog for a bear, especially a Newf. Bears are big and black. Jenny was big and black. Bears looks scary, Jenny didn’t look scary. Bears have tails… wait, bears don’t have tails. They never have. Jenny most definitely had a tail and therefore wasn’t a bear.
One day, Mom was driving me to school. She would always drive me because we lived outside the school district and the bus wouldn’t pick me up at the driveway. This day was unique and stands out vividly in my mind because of the lightning storm. It was cracking all over the place but hadn’t started to rain yet.
When we drove past the golf course about five minutes from the house. People were out on the fields, swinging their metal golf clubs high into the sky, begging the lightning to strike them. That was my first clue in life that people are stupid.
There was a little store/post office about two miles from our house. Mom would take us on a bike ride down there sometimes to rent movies. I would rent Kiki’s Delivery Service over and over again. I absolutely adored that movie.
Kitty corner from the little store was an abandoned building. When I was little I thought it was a school. I don’t know why maybe it was a school at one point that got abandoned. I thought it was cool that it was still there so I snapped a photo.
I definitely got some weird feelings from the area though and didn’t want to venture any closer.
This is the beaver dam we would pass on the way to Duluth. I always thought wild rice grew in the pond (lake?) the beaver dam is on. Not sure if I was right or not, but that’s what I thought.
I remember one year, someone took the beaver dam down, but the little critters went to work and put it back up. It’s incredible that nearly 20 years later, the dam is still there.
And this is the house.
It was a lot nicer when my family lived there. The driveway looped around where the truck now sits. All the overgrown weeds were part of the yard that dad would mow.
I learned how to ride a bike without training wheels here. Dad told me to pedal fast if I wanted to stay upright, so I did, straight into a pine tree at the end of the driveway that isn’t pictured here.
Someday, I plan on making it to all the other towns I have called home. I want a photo of every place I have lived in. Silly, but it is my current photography project. It may take a while, but I’ll get it done.