Return to Pooh Corner James Parton
February 28, 2010

I bet all of you think James has lost his ol' noodle when you opened this post? But think about it, A. A. Milne's stories on Winnie-The-Pooh took place in the hundred acre wood.
As a child I loved the Winnie-The-Pooh stories and had read both of Milne's books by the age of eight. I loved them and I can still remember the stories and the illustrations. I had Pooh records and I had a viewmaster with Pooh disks. But I oddly never had a desire for a stuffed bear. But I associate it mostly with my carefree childhood. I lived on Briggs Rd, near Oteen in the Swannanoa valley at that time, up to the age of ten when we moved to Starnes Cove. We had some woods behind the house on Briggs and they were the first woods I ever explored. First with dad and then alone. Between my eighth and tenth year I had explored all of those woods on the hill, mostly alone. These woods amounted to several acres but in my imagination they were the " hundred aker wood " of A.A. Milne's stories. When not playing or in school I was either in these woods or up on the Wilson farm at the end of the road. I walked nearly half a mile in the morning to the bus stop down on Moffitt Rd. Things were so different in those days. How many people do you know whose kids at eight walk the woods alone or wait at a bus stop so far from adult supervision? It was a different world back then. A better one.
Last Wednesday I stumbled across Kenny Loggins song " Return to Pooh Corner ". Listening to it the memories flooded back. Of Winnie The Pooh. Of Briggs Rd. Those woods, The nearby mountain in fall colors. Jumping in the leaves with dad. Fireflies. A November snow. Monarch butterflies. The dew covered spiderwebs in late summer. Crocuses in our yard in late winter/early spring. I remember all of these things as if it were yesterday. That night I returned to Pooh Corner after all those years. Tears welled in my eyes and ran gently down my cheeks. Life has been hard lately and it is nice to go back to more pleasant times. That song served as the vessel for transport.
I intend to somehow visit my " hundred aker wood " on Briggs Rd in the near future. I have not been in them in 35 years. Those woods have probably changed much less than I have. Google Earth shows them still to be there. 

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