domingo, enero 30, 2011
As I stood with Mother outside, on the recently repaved sidewalk, the house in front caught all my attention. Not that I hadn't seen it before, but somehow this time I looked at it with different eyes.
Memories of happy times flooded my mind. On Sundays, the grandparents were happy receiving the visit of the big family they had raised -- most of them married at the time and with a bunch of noisy children.
The house stood big and principal, always well kept and neatly painted. I remember the elegant wooden door. It was the first house with a telephone! The owners were "the rich" of the neighborhood, and I admired the trucks and cars that were parked on the curb on Sundays and special occasions.
One of the daughters never married, so she was the one who took care of the old grandparents in their last days. He was the first to pass away, his wife a few years after.
Years passed by. The noisy children became adults and had their own children too, but they hardly ever visited the old big house, whose only inhabitant was the elderly, grumpy aunt. She and the house became older and older. When she became unable to take care of herself, her brothers and sisters decided to put her in a home.
She told my mother that she wanted to get back to her house -- she even escaped the nearby home one day. But they made her go back. Then she passed away too.
After years of neglect, the house is no longer pretty. It's dark and silent, the paint all flaked off -- an abandoned house. Gone are the days when it was full of chatter, laughter, and noisy children. Impermanence.