Saturday, November 2, 2013

So where did the veranda and peony bushes go?

Nothing stays the same.Take for instance, my grandparents' farmhouse. If you rode by that place today-still sitting along a certain country road-you wouldn't recognize what was once the family homestead. It looks nothing like the photo above. But it doesn't matter. When I ride by-always slowing down a bit-I see it as it used to be.

The screened-in veranda with its white screen door is gone as is the red-shingle siding all around the exterior. I still see it covered in red shingles. My grandmother's peony bushes are no longer there. Except for one, the poplar trees lining the cinder driveway are gone too. When I think of that driveway I remember crashing my bike on it as I rounded the curve behind the house. I still have cinders in one of my knees as a result of going too fast probably when I was told not to. I can envision mounds of snow that would bury the driveway and hear leaves scurrying across it in the wind. I remember being so afraid one hot summer night during a thunderstorm. We were sitting on that veranda-gathered around our grandmother-watching the storm-hiding our eyes and covering our ears until lightning hit so close by that my cousin and I jumped up screaming. We ran inside and hid in a closet.

When we 'grow up' things that once seemed larger and wider and taller appear not so huge or wide or tall. That's how it is when I look at that front yard. That was our Disney World-our field of dreams-the place where imagination took us on endless adventures-playing baseball and croquet-trying to catch each other in Red Light, Green Light-playing tag-making bows 'n arrows out of some kind of green rubber-type branch that bent like a stick of gum-climbing trees.

So despite disappearing shingles-a veranda taken off and peony bushes dug up-and so much more- nothing can take away the memories. We all have a place like that-tucked away in our heart-just where those memories belong.

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