Making Friends

When I was growing up, my family moved a lot.  I was born in Brooklyn in my grandmother’s house and this was the same house that my dad was born in.  He worked for RCA and he got a transfer to Long Island, so we moved to Massapequa when I was four years old and then my parents found a better house in Farmingdale, so we moved again.  These moving experiences required me to reach out and make new friends.  I was resilient and determined to meet the new kids on every block that we moved to.

My mom was from Milwaukee and she missed her family, so my dad got another transfer and we moved to the dairy state.  At first we rented an apartment and at this time we had a German Shepherd named Lucky Girl.  We were on the second floor which meant climbing stairs, but our dog was afraid of stairs, so every time she had to go out for her business, my dad had to carry her down and then back up the stairs.  My dad was really good with dogs and he found a dog class that was nearby, so he thought some extra training would be good for our dog.  The first day of training all the dogs were lined up facing the instructor.  Lucky Girl was antsy and she broke loose from my dad who was holding her leash and she barked at the rest of the dogs and they also all broke loose.  The instructor told my dad to never bring Lucky back again.  My dad could not take all that carrying her down and up the stairs, so we found her another home where she had room to run around and then we moved again.

We got a three bedroom house on 54th Street, where my parents took the master bedroom and my sister had her own room.  I had to share a room with my brother and we had bunk beds.  I am about 7 years old and probably in 2nd grade and again making new friends in my fifth different establishment.  The first day we moved in I went down to the corner where all the kids were playing and I introduced myself as the new king of the neighborhood.  One kid said that if I was the new king that I should be crowned and he picked up a rock and smashed my head with it.  We stayed here for a year and a half and then my parents found a better house on 67th Street.

The best thing about this new house was that it had a neighborhood park just down the corner where they had lots of activities for kids.  We stayed here a couple of years and I made new friends again having learned my lesson that it was not a good thing to be the king.  My dad hated the cold winters in Milwaukee and he wanted to go back East where his family was, so he got another transfer.  We stayed at my Aunt’s house for the summer and at the end of August my parents bought a duplex in Oakwood Heights on Staten Island.  Now I am in 5th grade and living in my seventh different house.  This was a new development, so all the families came from different places, mostly Brooklyn and I made more friends.  I finished 5th and 6th and then I went to Junior High School for 7th grade, however we moved again just after I started 8th.

I arrived in South Plainfield New Jersey, I am in 8th grade and this is the eighth different neighborhood that I moved to.  I did not fear change and I had become good at packing my stuff into cardboard boxes.  Moving so many times forced me to transition into an outgoing extrovert.  I never kept in touch with any of my old friends, because I knew that I would always be able to make new ones.

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