TRIP BACK HOME

I close my eyes and find myself flying back to my little house in Vancouver, Washington, close to my work, where my husband and I had lived for only a couple years after he retired. As I settle on the back porch, I smile. It looks the same as when I left it.

The tall wooden patio table and tall chairs sit outside the back door, under the awning, inviting me to sit and have a cup of tea while my visiting grandsons play in the grass that surrounded the house, and then go to pick blackberries from the vines that grew on the fence.

I open the screen door and back door to go into the dining room, with its beautiful blue walls and the windows that let me see outside when we were eating. When we moved into this house, I was delighted with the dining room. We hadn’t had one when my girls were being homeschooled; the kitchen and dining room were one. It was always a struggle (that I didn’t win) to keep the “dining room table” as a place to eat rather than as a school room. In this house, I made it a priority to keep the table clear, so that when you came in the back door, you didn’t have to look at all our junk!

I am delighted that someone put on a kettle and a tea bag sat in a cup on a kitchen counter. I pour hot water in the cup and look out the large window over the sink onto the expanse of grass that belongs to the place where I worked. On the other side of the lot is a house without a curtain on the window. There was never much activity at that window. I smile at the memory and go looking at the rest of the house. From the kitchen into the laundry room, and back to the kitchen, detouring into the basement. My husband had put a padlock on the door to keep our grandsons from falling down the stairs, but it isn’t there now; we stopped using it after they moved to another city. There is a window downstairs so it’s not really dark in the daytime, but I switch on the light anyway. It’s not a big basement, just large enough to hold the metal shelves that allowed it to become a pantry, a boon for us.

Back upstairs, I meander through the rest of the house, sipping my cup of tea, going to the living room, where three large book cases line one wall, filled by my book-loving husband and then into the two bedrooms, both with doors off the living room, one used as the computer room, where I did lots of composing.

I go out the front door in the living room and gaze at the soft green lawn that goes all around the house, penned in by the chain link fence. All along the inside of the fence is a row of evergreen trees, planted by the resident who lived in the house before we did. They are bigger now, even more of a screen from the road. It is a quiet dead-end street, but the screening is still nice. One day, a large, sick raccoon took refuge between the fence and the trees, hiding from the animal control man. When we couldn’t find the raccoon, I decided to go outside the fence and see if I could see him. Sure enough, he was hiding where the fence turned the corner, hidden by the trees. Poor fellow. He really didn’t have a chance once I saw his hiding place.

I sip my tea and take the empty cup on the kitchen counter. It has been a nice trip, but now it was time to go home. In a moment, I am resting on bed at home, relishing my trip “back home.”

Written in response to Day Room with a view. Today’s Prompt: If you could zoom through space in the speed of light, what place would you go to right now?

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