Mom and I had a nice long conversation last night. We just sat at the kitchen table and talked until midnight. We mainly talked about family, and I wanted to gather as much information as I could about my grandfather whom I never met. He died at a very young age while my mom was still in high school. Since most of the old timers have left the neighborhood, the pool of people her own age is shrinking and shrinking. She is talking to people now whom she probably had never spoken to before. All of the old gossip is now coming back to life. It was a very tightknit community although it didn't seem so at the time. She's finding out that there were lots of "cousins" and friends of friends that she didn't know about. The "six degrees of separation" was really only one or 2 people.
It was a very interesting conversation. There is unfortunately a large gap on my father's side of the family. It seems that there was some bad blood between my grandmother and her in-laws. As a result my dad never really got to know aunts and uncles on his father's side. I have a fairly good family tree on his mother's side, but the other side is blank. This sucks because that's the namesake side of the family. I know there is a person in Tucson with the same name as myself. I have been debating contacting him for years and years. Perhaps he could help fill in that missing side or perhaps it would be a dead end. *shrugs* I'm not that much of a genealogy bug.
Still, it was interesting hearing about stories my mom gleaned over the years from her mother. It was hard to wrap my mind around people coming from Poland at the turn of the last century and settling in a neighborhood that could almost be classified as semi-rural. If I get motivated I should do a little more digging. I already found the ship registry from Ellis Island of when my grandmother came to this country. It's just a neat little bit of info.