My childhood home was a semi-detached house, like all the others on our side of the street. We were sandwiched between detached homes across the street, and government subsidized townhouses behind us. We were surrounded by families with kids. There was no shortage of people to play with. The streets had sidewalks and we were free to ride our bikes without an adult as long as we stayed on them. There was a park near by with playground equipment, soccer and baseball fields, and a forest at the back. It was a pretty safe and friendly neighbourhood.
There really weren’t many challenges. In addition to there being many kids, there were also a lot of teenagers. Overall, we were supposed to stay away from them and where they hung out. There were some that were considered bad news. Sometimes I would stray beyond the boundaries given by my mom, and might end up seeing something I didn’t want to –like a fish being blown up by a firecracker in the creek. A kid once told me that some of the teenagers molested young kids behind the dumpsters. As an adult I wonder if it was a rumour or if it had happened, and whether it had happened to that kid. I never personally had a bad experience with anyone in the neighbourhood. Once I found my bike at someone else’s garage sale. I had memorized the serial number, and knew it was mine. I returned with Kim and my sister, and stole it back! It seemed dangerous at the time, but no one came after me.