Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The End

Well, this past Monday the new owners closed on my parent's house. The day before I decided to take one last trip down memory lane. Some would say it was strange of me to do so, but I had to go over there to turn off the lights one last time. Yes, ceiling lights and some old lamp fixtures were left behind, and left lit, these last six months since my dad's departure for the nursing home, so as to discourage vandalism.

My first room to visit was the basement. No lights were left on there so I turned them on, all of them; you know the kind of light I'm talking about in an unfinished basement, the one bulb fixtures that hang from the ceiling with a pull cord. When I was young I used to love to turn them all on at once, especially at night. This was going to be the last time. The memories. My younger brother and I used to play down there. He died while having AIDS in 1999. My first home gym was also down there. The remnants of my old lat-pulldown machine were still hung from the ceiling. I built that in April, 1972. The bench where my radio used to sit was still there too. I used to love listening to it while working out. All I could do now was stare at what once was. I turned those lights off for the last time. Sadness.

Next was the attic. It too was unfinished; just one light hung from the ceiling. The new owners plan to raise the roof in order to add a bedroom up there. I was the last Pierson to see it in its original form. Some Christmas cards delivered to my mom in 1955 were still on an old table. My mom died in 2005. An old Johnny Speed remote control car was on the floor beside the old artificial Christmas tree. I decided to leave all as is. Again, all I could do was stare at what once was. I turned that light off one last time. Sadness

All of the rooms had memories, every square inch of them. There was that bedroom my brother and I shared. The times we played "Police in neck-ties", inspired by the character Inspecter Henderson, from the old Super-Man series. The closet served as our police car. Over by the corner windows was our desk, complete with a working toy type writer, and one of those Remcoe toy phones that actually worked when hooked up to its sister phone by wire. I turned that light off one last time. Sadness.

Well, after completing my little ritual throughout the house (yes, I turned on and off every light switch in the house) it was time to turn off one last light. There, it is done. my ritual was winding down now. Time to reflect. Never again will my mother's loving voice be heard within these walls. I will never again hear the sound of my brother's voice echo through the halls. I will never again feel the safety of being within these walls, safety provided by a fearless dad. He doesn't even remember this house now.

I stood in the doorway one last time. I turned to look in. All the lights were off now. It was so very quiet, so very dark...

The Pierson family doesn't live here anymore.