A house made of memories
Every year on the hot month of July we all take our annual trip to Salinas, CA to visit my Grandmamma. This time was no exception. Her house which seemed to grow smaller as I grew older was nestled in the middle of nowhere. Her neighbor was a torn down watermill no longer in service. But every morning she would cross the watermill to a small creek and get freshwater. Despite the fact that my mom had just bought her a water filtering system she appreciated it but she didn't use it. Ever since my grandfather passed away I wanted her to come live with us. I didn't want her to feel alone. Every year I would beg her to come. But she would always refuse. She would always say "Stacey this is my life, this is where I belong." I never understood why.
As soon as we pulled up the long, narrow dirt road leading to her small yellow house a feeling of joy and peace overcame me. Out of the old chimney my grandfather built before he passed the smell of my favorite Mexican dish permeated the sky. She was sitting on the old squeaky porch swing she always turned down my father's offer to fix it. She would always say with her soft frail voice "let it be". She was a beautiful short little lady, my mom looked just like her. Her hair white as snow, wrinkles adorned her mahogany colored complexion each wrinkle telling a story. A story of happiness, sadness and joy. Despite her stature when she entered a room you would think she was the tallest women in the room. She stood with so much poise and confidence I envied her. She was a stubborn women. As I looked to the left I could see the old tire swing covered in dew my grandfather had built for us when I was around 5 years old. It was still there hanging from the huge apple tree, the tree was glistening with red delicious apples begging to be picked.
As I entered the door the smell hit me. That smell was like a kaleidoscope of childhood memories. The memories where everywhere I looked to the small rocking chair by the window. The chair that endured sleepless nights due to my sister having a horrendous fever to the birth of my baby brother. And the couch that I would lie down on waiting to hear my grandmother's soft footsteps scurrying to open the back door to try and not awake anyone as she went to the creek to fetch fresh water. That never worked I was sure that door was the reason for my siblings waking up every morning. It would creek almost cry in pain every time it was opened. She would scurry back with a pitcher of water to make us the perfect lemonade.
The living room was covered with family portraits and our baby pictures. It no longer looked like a living room it looked more like a shrine. The biggest picture of them all was a picture of my grandfather. He was wearing his plaid shirt that he loved so much, I couldn't help but reminisce my times with my grandfather I remember so vividly when I fell off the swing he made me. He picked me up in his strong arms and cleaned me up, he made a band aid out of toilet paper and tape. My tears blurring my vision he would wipe them away with his calloused thumb and reassure me everything was fine. He was a tall strong man, his face full of scars. His eyes the most beautiful shade of brown. His fingers calloused due to him working in the fields ever since he was twelve. His smile would make anybody's pain go away. I loved him. I missed him. He was my hero. I never knew how much I truly missed him until I would come to my grandparents' house. I would drown in my own memories.
As I turned toward the kitchen I could still hear my aunts and uncles laughing, teasing and enjoying the company of one another. When I closed my eyes I could still see them gathered by the large wooden table my grandfather had built for my grandma's birthday. It was very sturdy a beautiful cherry color. I still remember seeing my grandfather's calloused hands after he finished it but he was pleased with his work. But now no one used the table it just laid there covered in dirt, it was dormant. Ever since my grandfather passed my grandma wouldn't use it. She refused to let anyone sit on it. As I walked out I caressed it. My fingers leaving behind a snail trail. I wanted to bask in the atmosphere. There was memories everywhere you turned.
Walking out to the back porch I could see out in the distance the fields where we used to run and play hide and seek. They were covered in blackberries, I could still remember when my grandma would spank me because I would spoil my good clothes staining them with blackberries. Through the blackberry bushes I can see my grandmother's garden. It was even more beautiful that I can remember. It was covered with roses, dandelions, chrysanthemums and my favorite marigolds. She had rows and rows of strawberries planted as well. The soil was still moist, the smell of dirt and strawberries was overpowering. I remember how she would always bring me with her to pick them when they were ripe. I was young so I would just sit there and watch as she plucked them one by one and gave them to me. I would eat one and put one in the basket. She would get up, her pants torn and covered in dirt and take me by my hand we would go under the swing that we loved so much. I missed those times. As I walked towards the front my grandma was swinging from the tire swing. Her hair was down it was flowing in the wind, tears in her eyes. "I'm not alone" she whispered. Now as I looked around I could see the real beauty of my grandparents' house I could see why she never wanted to leave.
Now I understood.
As we drove away I realized. I would miss that noisy kitchen door, the smell that drowned me in memories. I missed those times dearly and know that soon everything will only be a memory like my favorite swing. I will always be thankful for that pesky squeaky door and the unconditional love behind it.
Second sentence would be better with "This time it was the same trip with out exception".
It should contain 2 opposing views.
Despite she appreciated the water filtering system my mom had just bought her, she didn't use it.
I wanted her to live with us from the day my grandfather passed away as I didn't want her to feel alone.
Every year I beg her to to stay with us but she always refuses. She always says "Stacey this is my life, this is where I belong" which I never understood.
As soon as we pulled up the long, narrow and dirt road leading to her small yellow house, a feeling of joy and peace overcome me.
The smell of my favorite Mexican dish spreaded from the old chimney which was built by my grandfather when he was alive, permeated the sky.
She used to sit on the the old squeaky porch which was damaged, turning down my father's offer to fix it.
A long essay, will be back again.
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