So awhile back at the beginning of the semester in my english class we had to write this profile about a place that meant something to us. I decided to write about my grandparents home, I used to spend a lot of time here as a child and this place still means something to me. I think it’s good to reflect on the good things rather than the bad. Below is what I submitted to my teacher.
One of many visible gravel roads, the busy highway in sight, surrounded by fields of soybeans and corn rotating each season. Train tracks across the highway, where on Christmas Eve we would all stay up and watch the train pass. The bright fluorescent lights that would make the shapes of candy canes, Rudolph, pine trees and snowflakes. A white two story house stood tall and proud, ‘built’ by my grandpa, or so he says. An elevated porch with one moldy wooden ramp and freshly built plywood staircase. Five tall trees scattered in the vast front yard like the ideas for a new book. Small pear trees on the edge that we never ate because we always forgot about them. An old worn trampoline that lost its cover next to those abandoned trees. Old cracked tar mixed with the gravel road and sand like dirt, that’s the driveway. Dandelions on the small hill right next to the porch that would bloom every year, front yard.
Sticks that fell like raindrops from the many trees because of all the fat birds, hiking staffs or swords. My older brother and I would whack the sticks against the trees to make sure they were strong enough to play our games. If they broke right away like eggs against a mixing bowl they weren’t strong enough. When you felt that vibration as if you were feeling the hum of the train passing in your hands, it was good. We would fight each other, as if our front yard had turned into some vast fantasy land. The small hills were now mountains, the clothesline was our only escape from the villain. The beat up trampoline was the headquarters. The driveway was the desert to cross over to the industrial dumpster where another headquarters lay. The ramp and porch though was always the pause spot. That was where we would keep our warm sticky sweet soda to reenergize us. Outside that house was where our imagination grew before we begged to get the newest gaming consoles or toys. The other half of this map was a place I always explored and had infinite question of why everything was there.
Three skyscraper pines right outside my grandpa’s stadium sized pull barn with red walls and white doors of thick sheet metal. I used to think that it held all the night creatures hidden inside because he would lock it up every night. Where my footsteps would crunch loudly like fresh cereal under the gravel. A grid of plywood up to the ceiling on the far end waiting to be used to create something. Very few things were actually in the barn, just tools and beat up diner booths. As if the barn were for decoration, the six by six and their dead wheels made it what it is. Sometime he would bring a tractor up and he would let me climb them as if that was my jungle gym. On cool fall days I would wander in there, curious of what he was working on. Always working on something, I would sometimes have to go find him to say dinner was ready. My barefeet always unfazed by the cracked tar and gravel.
On days when I wasn’t the imaginative child, I was the curious adventurer. When the weather near was perfect, the leaves still falling and the sun shining I would go outside by myself when my siblings would be playing video games. Those days would usually start at a scratched up clear varnished oval oak table in the dining room. Usually drawing then I would look outside and hear the birds as if they were calling me to come outside and explore those unknown woods behind the house. I always told my grandpa I would be gone for a while outside to the woods a few feet away. My uncle who lived across the vast field of usually soybeans owned that land. There used to be a dirt trail that connected the two. He would tell me to be careful since I would be alone usually and if I wanted to bring our dog Hoover to do so. An old german shepherd that I swore up until his death was a grandpa in a past life. This dog used to play soccer, my aunt had taught him before she left for college. He was usually resting so I went alone, into the woods. My walmart tennis shoes crushed the tall wheat plants, searching for the entrance to the vast woods. Once I had found this gateway to a new place I kept to the trail. Shades of orange lay on the floor like a moveable carpet. The kick of my foot sent the leaves flying as if they were grasshoppers running from me. My uncle had three hunting stands but back then I thought they were tree houses. Some were higher than the two story house, yet still I climbed them. I felt as if I were this small bird back then ready to take flight. Now when I climb them I feel that same rush of how high I am, this is what it must feel for a bird. The trails would lead to a river I assumed but some lead to a different place. I walked and talked to myself about the small ideas in my head of something I can’t remember now. I walked without a destination in mind and ended up in a small field of clovers. It was open so I saw the sky and clouds, clear like the blue raspberry icee at the gas station. That place wasn’t really home but it was somewhere in between.
With all I this said, thank you so much for reading this. I hope your day is great and I will see you soon.