Thursday, March 04, 2010

First Home

MacGregror Arms Apartments - 1925
In 1965 the late Richard and Jane Vredenburgh moved into this fine building following their marriage. A year later when I came along I guess you could say I moved in too.
We lived there until 1969 when the rent was raised (I think to $137) above what my parents could get a mortgage for. So they moved to Cebra Avenue and spent the rest of their lives there.
I have clear memories from living in the building and numerous stories told me by my folks over the years. I loved to greet my dad coming home walking up the stairs next to Borough Hall from the ferry. The ceilings were nine feet high and our apartment, not subdivided like some, was huge. There was a dentist in the ground floor (later home to Montezuma's, the Side Street and now a tapas place). There were tons of places for my mom to shop along the foot of Victory Blvd. and we were always going to the library.

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But then we moved to then quiet, paving stoned, tree-lined Cebra Avenue. In the summer horses from Clove Lakes Stables would come over Cebra steadily clip clopping along. The woods were filled with possums and pheasants. Strange abandoned treehouses made of doors high up in the trees on the hill rising above Cebra Avenue became visible when the leaves fell in the fall. Moving to Cebra in the summer of 1969 still calls me a back with a magical pull that I hope never fades completely away.

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