I found this today while looking through some of my bits and pieces of writing from long ago. It’s about one of my favourite places–my Grandma’s house:
I remember sitting on a stool in the sun-dappled warmth of my Grandma’s kitchen. As she kneaded bread I would peer at the deep purple and yellow pansies fluttering in the outside window box. She sang hymns as she worked the dough and puffs of flour dust settled on her cotton house dress.
Her hands were soft and dimpled like the bread dough; her body was ample and comforting like a cherished pillow. I loved her and I loved that old house–the front veranda just made for running and iced lemonade. Sweating and spent, we grandchildren surrendered to the hypnotic perfume of the lilac trees.
At lunch, my grandfather savoured the sweetness of garden raspberries and cream while listening to the stock report on the radio. Then he solemnly rolled clumps of nut-brown tobacco into fragile white paper and relaxed with a smoke. He was a lean, tanned Colorado cowboy who kept to himself.
In the evening Grandma sat with her thimble and needlework; Granddad thumbed through the newspaper. At exactly 10 p.m. they switched on the radio for news of the day while they sipped a final cup of tea. In bed, I was lulled by the beams from headlights drifting across the ceiling as cars whizzed by on the highway–a strange but oddly soothing lullaby.
Grandma’s house was my haven, my happy place even when there were four of us cousins in one bed enduring the heat of homemade mustard plasters (for chest colds). We knew that the next morning Granddad would regale us with stories about how he drank chocolate milk from brown cows when he was a kid or how he could make his car go 100 miles an hour!
That was a special time and place–all gone now. If I could just have one day, even one hour to go back… Time tumbles forward relentlessly but I still have my memories.