Sunday, 23 August 2009

The House of Chirstmas Past

We were coming back from the sea side a little while back and i had the sudden urge to drive off the main road. I thought i saw what appeared to be a street i used to know, in a village that seemed delightfully familiar. I found the house my grandparents lived in, just off the asphalt, on a dusty dirt road, falling to pieces under some apple trees.

Not much was left of what i used to call our country house and somehow, breaking the lock on the front gate - that hasn't been touched for more than 17 years - i felt some flickers of childhood lurking behind the fallen barn and the old rotting house.

I remembered its bright blue window panes, the two terraces where we used to eat water melons and my sister hiding under the table, scared of roaring summer thunders. I saw our old Skoda 120 parked in the garden and mother and father preparing salads.

Since the last time I've been there, the days have blown most of our feeling circuits, fried the childhood on/off button. Memories change and flex with time, like skin, and the reality is never the same as how it used to be. You romanticize on how lovely it used to be, how beautiful she was, how green the grass was but the truth is, it was never as good as you fantasize and all you'll do by returning is pay homage to yourself and be disappointed. All you really know for sure is how things changed you - for better or for worse. Or so we've come to notice.