4th of July story by Jean Tretow-Schmidt
A short story recorded by Jean Tretow-Schmidt at the 75th anniversary of the Westmorland Neighborhood 4th of July celebration.
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Interviewer: This is Marie Kazmarek, and this is...
Narrator: Jean Tretow-Schmitz.
Interviewer: So how long have you lived in the Westmorland neighborhood?
Narrator: Thirty years this summer.
Interviewer: OK, do you have any favorite Westmorland memories?
Narrator: Well, Fourth of July would be one of them, of course, but when we were looking for a house in 1986, we were looking for a level lot and a house with four bedrooms and two bathrooms. And we found the ideal house for a really good price. We paid sixty-six thousand dollars. Um, the house needed a lot of repair, and so we invested a lot to make it usable for our family and our housemates. So, um, one of my favorite memories is really watching how our house developed into the home that we were looking for. And also, um, how wonderful it is to be in the neighborhood. I’ve noticed that a lot of people like dogs, and own dogs. It’s an easy neighborhood to walk around with with dogs because of the sidewalks. And, um, we live across the street from the Glenway Golf Course, so some of our favorite memories also involve the golf course, because for a while when we first moved into our house, we had an annual, with just our family and friends, Glenway open, because my husband’s birthday is in September. So he’d always golf with the guys, and then we’d have a party. Um, and it’s really lovely to watch the sun rise over the golf course in the morning, and to go out there and see the stars at night. So those are some of our favorites.
Interviewer: What do you like about the Fourth of July celebration?
Narrator: I like it that there’s so many kids here. It makes me feel younger than I am. Because our kids were very young when we moved here, so, um, that’s one of the big things. And I love the parade. I think it’s really fun that adults and kids feel free to just enjoy themselves. So this is a special one. We have vintage cars, too. That’s a fun aspect that was added for the 75th anniversary.
Interviewer: Has Westmorland changed over the years?
Narrator: Well, because we only came in 1986, I would say there hasn’t been a lot of change. Except that I’ve noticed that people in general tend to improve their homes rather than move. So I’ve seen a lot of construction and rebuilding and remodeling of homes, which is actually a nice thing to see, because it means that people are investing in the neighborhood. So I’d say those are the biggest changes.
Interviewer: Any other kind of stories you want to tell?
Narrator: Um, I want to say that it’s really great also to live in a neighborhood with a mix of people, older people who’ve lived in the homes for a long time and don’t want to move because they love it so much, as well as younger families moving in. I’m just gratified to see more young families moving in and enjoying the wonderful place that it is to live.
Interviewer: Yeah. Anything else that you’d like to add?
Narrator: I think that’s it.
Interviewer: All right, thank you.
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