…and you thought your life was exciting!

#182 – The Old House

with 8 comments

It’s still a bit surreal to me. The old house meandered on the market for nearly 18 months, and then when it sold it was a celebration of mixed emotions: relief, resentment, maybe a little regret. I know my parents are thrilled to be rid of the house, especially considering the burden it had become over the last few months. But I’ll miss the place. I didn’t start thinking about this at the beginning, no. Only now, with it truly in the hands of other folks, does it really seem to hit me. I used to (grudgingly) water the lawn; I used to live in the far top left bedroom, then moved to the larger one consisting of the right top two windows, and then only to move back to the small one when D came home; I once slipped on the front step after I missed seeing it covered in ice on winter; I used to find the grossest-looking mushrooms growing on that tree to the far left; I used to collect rocks from the driveway and keep them in a bucket in our garage; I used to have my friends over a few nights a week, so that we could play games and watch stupid TV shows upstairs; I used to record sappy songs and draw cartoons in a corner of my bedroom; I used to wake my father up for his graveyard shift at the casinos; I used to built forts out of pillows and chairs, and sleep in them for as long as my mother would allow me to; I used to race up the stairs with Bitsy at night (we were scared–and probably still are–of monsters); I used to fight off a late-night army of ants with D; I used to sleep till 3 in the afternoon on Saturdays; I used to have a lot of memories there.

No, I still do. Goodbye, old house. I probably won’t visit, but I’ll always think of you.


Written by Paul

August 29, 2007 at 12:46 pm

Posted in family, musings

8 Responses

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  1. I loved reading this. My husband and I are in the position that your parents were in…trying to sell a family home. In our case, it’s a home that my parents bought when I was a teen, and when they died, the grand old house was left to my siblings and me. Since none of them ever planned to return to the community, my husband and I bought them out, so to speak. We labored long and hard to make the house a refuge, a place of peace, rest, and beauty. My children and their cousins enjoyed coming for visits and would longingly use the phrase “Granny’s house” as they swang on the front porch swing, ate in the breakfast room, or watched t.v. in the cozy den. As we approach retirement age, however, my husband and I wanted to be less encumbered by house payments and decided to put it on the market and buy a smaller home. My children DID NOT like this, but I think everyone has adjusted fairly well.

    The problem is that it’s been lanquishing on the market for ten months, and we can’t figure out why. It’s a lovely home built in the 1920s as a church parsonage. But I digress. What I mainly wanted to say is:
    1) The fact that your parents finally sold their home is encouraging. It gives me hope that there’s a buyer out there who will appreciate the wood floors, the transom windows, and the high ceilings.
    2) The memories of your years in the house (home) will always be a part of you. It’s great that you’ve recorded some of them for fellow bloggers.


    August 29, 2007 at 1:24 pm

  2. Thanks, Marla! Don’t give up hope. Even though it’s a buyer’s market, there’s gotta be someone out there that’ll want to buy it. A common complaint said about our old house was that it was a bit old-fashioned. People nowadays want the fancy homes shown on TV, I think. Which is a shame. But best of luck!


    August 29, 2007 at 1:42 pm

  3. My favorite memories: graduation parties, ant army, moving into your room to only have you arrive back home hours later, swatting strawberry flies & mosquitos & green heads, swim team, walking home from late bus, HALLOWEEN, babysitting queen, moving the piano in and out, taking a shower in the rents room as I just painted my bathroom and busting a pipe, walking to the tennis courts aka WAWA, historic Smithville…I’m sure there’s more.


    August 29, 2007 at 1:55 pm

  4. My turn! I loved: that one really big snow storm, where Susan and I trekked through lotsa snow to get to the WAWA for milk and stuff!, trick or treating in the hood, block parties, walks to the Tennis Courts, holiday bbqs at the rec center, standing at the bus stop in EVERY kind of weather, my little pink room, playing Air Hockey at the Dillon’s, 4 square at the D’Angelis house, jogs with dad, our simple and pretty Christmas lights, making mint iced tea, the few times mom would let dad build up a fire, playing video games with Biff.

    Things I remember well – but can’t ever say I loved: sharing a room (no offense, D!), mosquitos, greenheads, strawberry flies, dead deer draining in the garage, the screened in porch that didn’t really keep anything out, Brutus and Mr. B making their weekend ruckus, raking leaves, and the damn geese!


    August 29, 2007 at 2:53 pm

  5. Aw, we’re all so sentimental today! 🙂


    August 29, 2007 at 5:26 pm

  6. Like I haven’t cried enough this week. Sheesh. A man only has so many tears he can use each year.

    I had many of the same memories when I cut my Dad’s grass the other day. Walking behind that stupid self-propelled John Deere mower; grass flying; sweat stinging my eyes; remembering the vaguely intricate patterns I carve into the lawn; the two huge pines that I used to climb so much my hands would forever be covered in sap; the old metal shed full of wasps; the old metal swing set full of wasps; the gardens we’d plant in the back yard…….ugh. The list could go on. But alas, I don’t like there anymore. This is my new home. Where my new family lives.

    But home will always be where I grew up.



    September 1, 2007 at 4:17 am

  7. I didn’t mean to get everyone so emotional!!!


    September 1, 2007 at 2:51 pm

  8. […] cats, is characteristically cold and full of empty rooms. No, the home I’m talking about is the one I grew up in, the red-bricked, two-story structure that sat square in the middle of a T-cross section in a small, […]

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