Tuesday, August 14, 2012
As I child I began my weekdays with a four block walk up the hill from Cypress and 33rd, where I lived, to 37th Avenue, where I turned right, walked another block, before arriving at my school, Quilchena Elementary.
On that walk I would pass a large lot dominated by trees and shrubs, within which stood a small derelict house. Not once did I notice anyone home at this house, though much of my walking time was devoted to thoughts about who might live there, for how long, and what might this person be like.
Last spring, while walking home from Main Street, I came upon three boys walking slowly in the other direction, their attention fixed on a similar house as the one I passed when I was their age. The image brought to mind conversations I'd had with friends who took the same route to school as me, each of us sharing versions of what we thought went on in that too small house.
But the boys walking towards me that day were silent, taking in the house and the creepy vines that clung to it. Only when I passed did one of them speak up, and that was to say, "Wow, you could put three, maybe four houses there."