As the day settled and the sun remained beaming above the horizon; we dressed appropriately for the evenings activity, filled our water bottles, checked the wheels for air and latched our helmets. Then, my husband and I were ready to go. Our bikes took us down a well-traveled path, as we picked up speed to reach our designated point, in order to turn around and do it over again. We slowed our pace on the last stretch home and took in the surroundings. We passed this old, abandoned house many times, wondering what the story behind it was. One day, we decided to stop and get a closer look at it.
We parked our bikes in front of the walkway that was lined with red tulips and dried weeds. We cautiously approached the front porch. Although, it looked abandoned I envisioned an old, recluse of a man abruptly swinging the front door open and asking us, “What are ya’ll doing on my property?”, scaring the life out of us. But, that didn’t happen as we took one careful step at a time onto the weathered porch.
There were two rocking chairs with red, worn paint sitting quiet and still as if waiting for a leisurely, summers day visit. Resting on top of the single rocking chair was the top of a wooden crate that read: Baking Powder. I found that to be a peculiar place for it. I wanted that crate lid. I visioned how unique it would look hanging in my bistro kitchen. But, I was not going to take something that didn’t belong to me. Even if the house was abandoned, it would be stealing and I Am No Thief. So, we opened the screen door to read the dusty note that was affixed to the old, front door; hoping we would find out something about the owner of the house. It read something about going to court. There was a phone number on it, so I put it in my phone to call later because, I really wanted that baking powder sign.
We walked around the house, through a rusty gate and into the backyard. It had been a long time since that yard had been maintained. The grass was knee-high. There were colorful plants and bushes blooming as they were being choked out from the lack of lawn care. The back entrance into the house was original in its deteriorating appearance. There was a yellow, bare security light that would provide light onto the paint worn, concrete steps and a rusted railing that led the way into a lifeless house.
After we walked out of the backyard jungle, onto the side of the house, I noticed some bricks laying face up in a row, in the dirt. How interesting. They had writing on them. Just up from the bricks was a rusted shovel with no handle that had been stuck in the ground. Just up from the bricks was a water-spout with a broken knob.
After recording a bit of history that rests up the street from our home, we respectfully left the house and its surrounding the way we had found them. As we rode away into the sunset, we were even more curious (after reading that note that was affixed to the front door) as to what had happened to the person who once occupied that old, abandoned house along the path of our travels. Was he/she still alive or living their days within four, worn walls feeling lifeless and abandoned?