Spring Break brought us to South Bend, Indiana to visit my high school buddy, Mike. Mike and I met in freshman AP English, when he was the punk boy in the back of class that I determined should be friends with me. His mom owned Cup and Chaucer Bookstore, where I got my start in retailing, and we’ve been friends ever since. The punk boy my mom never really approved of is now a PhD professor at Notre Dame (you really can’t judge a book by it’s cover) and he’s now like a brother to me and Uncle to my kids…and most importantly one of my few friends that’s a one day drive away.
Mike lives in one of South Bend’s lovely historic districts, and with all the drinking that took place, I decided I should take advantage of the nice weather and run off a few beers. I have yet to get over my annual delusion that I will run Dam to Dam or a Fall marathon, so running through the streets of South Bend fantasizing about paint colors and landscaping seemed the perfect way to burn off St. Patrick’s Day.
There were beautiful homes that were largely complete. The beauty above was complete with paint, stained glass, landscaping….it was like my fantasy of what our home could be one day. I didn’t get to look inside, but it was so lovely to see a neighborhood restored. It gives me warm fuzziness to think of what River Bend Neighborhood could be one day.
Then there was one home that was like a cautionary tale. It had about 17 different colors on it, and it looked like there might be two or three additional projects going on in addition to the paint. It was lovely, and has so much potential, and the plaque outside said it was built in 1888, the year after our Hatton House was completed. I had to meet the owner! While on a walk with my son, we knocked on the door and a woman my age with children the same age as our kids opened the door. They had company, so we didn’t get to see the inside, but it made me re-double my commitment to starting one project and finish it, and not ending up with 17 paint colors in any one place at once. Let me know how long that idea lasts…